Out with the Old, in with the New

The traditional celebration of New Year’s in Japan is not so much glitzy so much as it is a nuanced acknowledgement and purging of the troubles of the past in preparation for the next year. These longstanding traditions in Japan are a sort of cyclical and reflective readying process, providing an ancient rhythm in an ever-changing, chaotic world.

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Megan Liutraditions, new year, japan
Detox in nature with Japanese 'Forest Bathing'

Mindful appreciation of nature is a theme that runs throughout Japanese culture, reflected in everything from subtly seasonal haikus, to Ghibli films that are famous for their featuring of lush natural landscapes. A practise that’s being rediscovered in Japan and receiving attention globally is the art of “forest bathing”, or shinrin-yoku (森林浴).

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