Obon in Japan


Obon is an important festival in Japan. Obon takes place in mid-August, and it is one of the most important traditions in Japanese culture. During Obon, it is believed that deceased ancestors return to visit us, so this is a good time for family members who live apart to reunite and celebrate together to pay their respects to their ancestors. Obon yasumi, which means “Obon holiday”. Obon yasumi is not a national holiday, but traditionally Japanese people take time off and many companies honor this custom. When my grandfather passed away over 10 years ago, we places fruits and drinks in front of the “Butsudan”. Japanese people get Butsudan in their homes to honor their deceased family members. So we did pray and burn “senko” incense more frequently with the rest of the family members during Obon period. In Japan, people culturally believe in the existence of spirits or the ghosts, and they live in “another world”. So during Obon period, our family members return to see us. Obon wasn’t my favorite holiday period because of its association with the ghosts. But I think honoring our ancestors is a very important value held by Japanese culture.

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