Kyoto Journal Issue KJ94

Inspired by Kyoto

INSIGHTS FROM ASIA

Kyoto Journal is an award-winning
quarterly English magazine founded in Kyoto, Japan,
presenting cultural and historical insights from
all of Asia since 1987.

Newsletter signup
ALL
  • ALL
  • FICTION, POETRY & REVIEWS
  • HIDDEN JAPAN
  • IN TRANSLATION
  • INSIGHTS FROM ASIA
  • OUR KYOTO
  • TOKONOMA
tibet book

A Visual Treasure of Wisdom

By all standards, Murals of Tibet is not an ordinary book of Tibetan art history: it is itself a monument to Tibetan art.

Sar-Kaley-630x787 copy

Sar Kaley (these so-called lucky birds)

No perfect way to earn merit in the end. Even something as simple as a bird becomes complicated. Yet still those bamboo cages at the foot of the stairs, a few kyat, and you’re compelled to have this thing all threadbare and shivering in our hands. And what was the wish again?

radish karami

The Vanishing Radish

As a farmer, it may seem commonplace that varieties of vegetables do not exist forever, but are in constant competition with each other for survival on our dinner plates, and that the development of modern agriculture and inter-regional (and now international) trade in produce have greatly accelerated this process.

mizuki shigeru bakemono yokai ghosts kehai

Mizuki Shigeru: Giving form to kehai

“A ghost doesn’t just all of a sudden appear out of nowhere; they are of necessity, always announced prior to their actual appearance by a sensa­tion of kehai or something eerie. In other words, without the feeling of fear no ghost will make its presence known.”

Ise Shrine Shikinen Sengu

Carpenter to the Gods: An interview with traditional carpenter Kawai Takami

“…when your efforts are such a tiny part of a project spanning thousands of years, you learn to appreciate the importance of small steps. If you imagine that your efforts are connecting to something eternal, speed seems relative.”

Azuki_Beans

While the beans are cooking

Grandmother was cooking kidney beans in a big pot. Sayo’s father had gone to Kitaura to buy groceries. Takara Hot Springs had no guests. The hot spring inn deep in the mountains was soaked in rain and silence.

Second Harvest Japan

Re-evaluating Connections Between Food Waste and Hunger

The Japanese government reports food surplus at 3-4 million tons each year. In comparison, annual rice consumption is roughly 8 million tons. This is the equivalent of one bowl of rice being discarded for every two bowls eaten. Food banks will never be able “overfish” the vast ocean of food surplus that is available.

kanga-an4

The Garden on the Table

Frozen pea and potato chip casserole. Long before I came to Japan, that dish, symbolic of all those Family Potluck church dinners of childhood, had cemented in my mind the basic incompatibility of religion and good food. Years, later, the experience of Japanese temple food, or shojin ryori, came as a revelation to me…

combini

Satori in the Conbini

I stopped at the neighborhood 7-Eleven conbini on my way home nearly every night. It became a strange little ritual. Each night I could shed my mousy English-teacher-in-Japan existence with fellow worshippers at the altar of consumer goods..

on the blog

Before you go, be sure to check out our latest issue:

KJ 93: Food