Monday, August 24, 2015

In Japan, stuff doesn't last but spiritual values do

By Pico Iyer
Ise Jingu is a Shinto shrine said to be the most sacred shrine in the country.
JAPAN---The Japanese are different from you and me. They don’t confuse books with their covers. Every twenty years, the most sacred Shinto site in Japan — the Grand Shrine at Ise — is completely torn down and replaced with a replica, constructed to look as weathered and authentic as the original structure built by an emperor in the seventh century. The motto guiding Japan’s way of being might be: New is the new old. And a culture based on impermanence — the wisdom of its oldest spiritual principles borne out by centuries of warfare and earthquake and fire — is less attached to the stuff that doesn’t last than to the values that do. [link]