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What is Japan really like?  city-night

This was one of my main questions when I was preparing to go to Japan for the first time back in the spring of 2001.  I had images of technology, samurai, Mt. Fuji, WWII, Tokyo, rustic houses, rice fields, sushi, sumo, and geisha.  My image was predominantly based on pop culture.  While none of these impressions were wrong, they only represented isolated threads in a tapestry of culture. 

There are many great resources on both the spiritual and cultural reality of Japan. First, check out our country profile on asianaccess.org. There you will find information such as an overview on how to pray for Japan.  While praying you can look at the sociological needs, spiritual needs, and trends and issues in Japan. Second, ask questions.  There are culture as well as religion & spirituality sections on the forum.  Go over there and start a discussion.  Be brave and ask a question.  There are plenty of people who would be happy to discuss their personal experience and insights about Japan. 

ShrineThere are also countless books, documentaries, magazine articles, blogs, and websites offering a wide range of information about Japan.  Be tenacious and take the time to discover more about Japan.  It is a beautiful nation full of tensions and apparent contradictions.  My prayer is that as you learn more about the nation of Japan and its people you would daily fall more in love with them and be burdened to pray for them yourself. 



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