it’s becoming popular year after year. Many stores sell colorful
Halloween decorations, costumes, and sweets. Also, many Japanese
cities/towns, shopping malls, and theme parks hold fun Halloween
events in September and October. Halloween parades, costume parties,
and trick-or-treat events are often observed in fall. People in
Japan enjoy ghost storytelling and haunted attractions more during
Kosupure (cosplay) has been popular among Japanese youth.
It’s a Japanese word for costume play. Costume play in
Japan usually means masquerade. People dress in
anime/movie/computer game character costumes, uniforms,
samurai/ninja costumes, kimono, and more. Lots of people
enjoy wearing various costumes and make-ups/masks and
becoming to their favorite characters.
Japanese society has always been amenable to taking things
from outside the country and filtering them through their culture,
sometimes with unusual and unexpected results. Halloween is no different,
and if using holiday images will sell more products they are very happy.
There’s not much you can do to give snacks the Halloween touch… I mean, pumpkin makes a decent pie but not much else, right? Wrong – in Japan, pumpkin is a popular flavor. Who’d have thought the gourd could go gourmet? The clincher came when Nestle Japan introduced pumpkin flavored Kit Kat bars.
It is believed that Halloween contains many of the remnants of an autumn holiday celebrated by the Druids called Samhain (apparently pronounced “sah-van” though some say SAH win or SOW in–and apparently meaning “summers end”). There historically have been pagan figures with names that are similar to this. But even in other countries there are similar holidays that have to do with spirits of the dead. The Japanese celebrate the obon, in which they are honor the spirits of the dead who they believe return home to their families. The obon is a Buddhist tradition and is celebrated from August 13 to August 16. In welcoming back and honoring the spirits, the Japanese place foods, flowers and paper lanterns around their family altars.
A tradition that coincides with the obon celebration is the Japanese folk dance bon odori. The participants of the bon odori dress in kimonos and dance with the beat of Japanese drums (taiko) in the background. There are even sometimes contests for the best kimono style costume.
Is it no wonder that fear can rule this country? During halloween Ken handed out tracts explaining the origins of halloween and the answer to the spirit of fear. In one class he taught at a local school, 4 out of 4 students when asked what they are afraid of (for their speech that week), they all said, ghosts and spirits!!
The Bible says “Fear ye not, neither be afraid: have not I told thee from that time, and have declared it? ye are even my witnesses. Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any. Isaiah 44:8