Internet Show & Tell No.2: O-Bon

The end of July marks O-bon time in Japan, a tradition honouring ancestors. Based on the old Lunar calendar, many families go off visiting their home villages to visit their loved ones from both sides, on what amongst the living falls around the date of July 15th.

Of course you can’t let your ghosts go hungry…O-bon refers to the container of offerings. This can be food for your otherworldly guests or something else that’s pleasing, like some ethereal floating lanterns.

Photo: Mitchell Adams (2006) Sourced from Flickr.
Photo: Mitchell Adams (2006) Sourced from Flickr.

As could be expected a unique kind of O-bon folk music & dance get a work out in celebrations:

As O-bon is also known as Hungry Ghost Month, i’ll throw in another folk song about ghosts for good measure (& as there are many to choose from!). This one’s an English ballad, referred to as Child Ballad 78 or The Unquiet Grave performed by the lovely Joan Baez:

For a much more comprehensive look at O-bon/Hungry Ghost Month

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