By Andy Couturier
Raised within the tumult of Japan’s commercial powerhouse, the 11 women and men profiled during this ebook have all made the transition to sustainable, pleasurable lives. they're at the present time artists, philosophers, and farmers who live deep within the mountains of rural Japan. Their lives should be uncomplicated, but they're surrounded by means of the luxuries of nature, paintings, contemplation, scrumptious nutrients, and an abundance of time. For example:
Atsuko Watanabe is an environmentalist and home-schooler who explores Christian mysticism whereas elevating her daughters in an outdated farmhouse Akira Ito is an ex–petroleum engineer who has turn into a painter and children’s e-book illustrator and explores the function of chi (life strength) within the universe via paintings and song Kogan Murata grows rice and crafts dependent bamboo flutes that he performs for alms within the surrounding villages Jinko Kaneko is an excellent artist and upholstery dyer who runs a Himalayan-style curry eating place within the Japan Alps by means of featuring the trips of those ordinary—yet exceptional—people, Andy Couturier indicates how we can also go back and forth a significant direction of dwelling easily, with recognize for our groups and our traditional assets. once we go away at the back of the super burdens of salary hard work, debt, rigidity, and day-by-day busyness, we develop wealthy in an entire new manner. those eastern are pioneers in a feeling; drawing on conventional japanese non secular knowledge, they've got solid a brand new kind of modernity, and of their good fortune is a lesson for us all: reside a lifestyles that issues.
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Extra info for A Different Kind of Luxury: Japanese Lessons in Simple Living and Inner Abundance
They were particularly interested in the last years of the Tokugawa regime, because attention to that moment buttressed the argument that Japanese modernity had diverse origins before the Meiji state formed. Osaragi’s best-selling, multivolume transwar series, Kurama Tengu (1924–59), was set in these years, as was his transposition of Mark Twain’s The Prince and the Pauper of 1939. Kurama Tengu featured a nineteenth-century swordsman who used his weapon—only when attacked—for equality and human liberty.
3 By then, however, the risks of being a factory town, an unmei kyōdōtai— a “community sharing a single fate” with the company—were becoming painfully clear. In Japan’s third industrial transformation—the move to petrochemicals, automobiles, and electronics—Chisso fell behind. The factory employed nearly 5,000 workers in 1950, fewer than 4,000 in 1960, fewer than 2,000 in 1970, and a mere 680 in 1994. Population declined to just over 30,000 by 1990. 4 Tragedy of a pollution disease In 1956, Minamata discovered that the factory had brought it a disease the world had never before seen: the large-scale poisoning of human beings from mercury dumped into the sea, concentrated in the food chain, and consumed in fish and shellfish.
The Sōshisha was partly responsible for two other new business endeavors designed both to provide jobs and model environmentally friendly activities. One was a soap factory that made soap from used cooking oil collected from the city’s restaurants. Another was a Japanese paper-making operation that employed Minamata disease patients and other physically and mentally disabled people. Through the 1980s, though, Minamata remained a city divided and declining. Patients struggled to get by, to keep memories of their tragedy from Furusato-zukuri 41 being forgotten, to get certified, and to have local and national governments found responsible for their plight.
A Different Kind of Luxury: Japanese Lessons in Simple Living and Inner Abundance by Andy Couturier