Wednesday, October 19, 2005


Yasukuni and Japanese view of life and death

I picked up good comments from Matt's blog to know the Japanese view of life and death through the Yasukuni Shrine.

Mika Said:

October 17, 2005 at 5:05 am

>I agree with the Korean protest on this subject. It is the equivalent of the German Chancellor visiting sites that venerate Nazi Heroes. That would not be tolerated by any European leaders.

Nazi's crime has nothing to do with the war or the colonial rule. Anyone that declares them equivalent is, to put it bluntly, ignorant.
Koizumi has explained many times that his visit to Yasukuni Shrine is in no way meant to celebrate Japan’s past aggressions. That shrine has a long history for people to pray for the war deads. In fact, Yasukuni was not an issue for a long time after the end of WWII, and many foreign royalties, political leaders, religious leaders and military personnel have visited the shrine.

It has been part of the Japanese custom and culture to make regular prayers for the souls of the dead. When Japanese tourists go to Hawaii, they will often visit the U.S.S. Arizona to pray for the souls of the men entombed there. Other countries have many monuments to remember the soldiers who died for their country. When a country is on the losing side of the war, the desire of the people to remember the sacrifices of the soldiers who lost their lives in the fighting is no different.
Occidentalism : Koizumi visits Yasukuni Shrine

apollo Said:

October 18, 2005 at 12:36 am

War Criminals, Japanese and Korean-Japanese alike,had sacrificed themselves under the Japanese Commands, and ultimately perished by the order of the Tokyo Court, and thus, thier souls are considered to be cleansed. It's not war criminal but their souls at Yasukuni. No bodies, no bones, but just the list of war deads and souls…

In Japan, those souls are the subjects of enshirinement and prayed for their calm and peaceful afterlife. Without enshrinement, these souls will be lost and unsettled (possively causing Tatari - conflicts and wrong-doings among people). Now you know why Koizumi is praying for pease at Yasukuni.

If you don't get this, just ignore it. At least, civilized people from Australia, UK, the US, Germany, Italy, France, Russia, Taiwan, Holland, Canada, Israel, Thai, Indonesia, Phillipine, Singapore, India, Pakistan, Brazil, Mexico, Panama, Spain and many other countries understand this, and all these countries have sent their militarymen and high-rank officials to pay visits at Yasukuni. For this, I have respects for these nations.
Occidentalism : Koizumi visits Yasukuni Shrine

Ell Said:

October 18, 2005 at 6:11 am

> Is it a shrine to honor the sacrifices of soldiers or a shrine to honor war criminals. That is the debate.

True. And the answer from Japan has been, repeatedly, “a shrine to honor the sacrifices of soldiers”.
The shrine was not set up AFTER the WWII. The shrine already existed well before WWI.
And of the approximately 2466000 souls enshrined, the war criminals are but 14.

The shrine is definitely not for the honor of the war criminals.

The problem with China and Korea is that they do not understand that “paying the price for a crime” as enough, that a criminal will always be a criminal no matter what repentence has been paid.
This is not the way of a democratic country.
I guess in their country, once you have been labelled as a criminal, even if you do time in prison, you're are labelled as a criminal when they come out of the prison. Once a criminal, always a criminal, never a way for repentence?

Also there is the religious difference between China, Korea and Japan.
In China and Korea, anything that your enemy created was destroyed.
I suppose that if there was a grave of an enemy in front of them, they would desecrate it and flatten it and and destroy it completely. Only then could they feel vindicated.
But Japanese believes that you can’t continue hating after the enemy is dead. There are many graves of so-called traitor/political enemy samurais that still exist to this date. Even their portraits, history, good acts as well as bad acts can be found in historic records. That is because once they were dead, their political enemies did not require any further “killing” of the enemy. That is how Japanese feel and think.

Just because China and Korea thinks differently does not mean Japan has to drop to the same level.

I personally don’t care one way or the other about the Yasukuni Shrine, but China and Korea should just stick their heads back into their own country and their problems. If there is a problem to the Prime Minister visiting the shrine, *Japanese* will deal with it.
It is not anything the foreign government should stick their nose into.

China and Korea, please grow out of your victim mentality!
It’s 60 years after the war. How long are you planning to keep your
Occidentalism : Koizumi visits Yasukuni Shrine

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