The Typhoon in Japan

Hey guys,

For my post I am going to talk a little about the Japanese and their views on typhoons.  Being from charleston and living through several hurricanes myself, I understand the power that these storms possess and the damage that they can cause to the built environmenet.

Historically, typhoons in Japanese culture have a suprisingly positive conotation.  In the 13th century, a typhoon was what saved Japan from an invasion by the Mongols.  Being vastly outnumbered, the Japanese army would have surely been defeated if it wasn’t for a large typhoon that sank 4000 mongol ships and killed more than 100,000 members of their force.  Since, Japanese see these storms as protectors of their country and culture.  Many believe that the god Raijin summons typhoons to purify the country in time of need.  Even today, many Japanese believe that these storms don’t just happen naturally, but they are born for specific reasons at specific times.

Although this may sound strange, when one thinks about the strong ties between nature and Japanese culture, it is easy to see why they percieve typhoons in a religious context.  People of Japan have a strong connection with nature, to the extent that it is embedded in their religions and culture.  Typhoons are one of the most powerful and destructive forces in nature, so something equally as powerful must be responsible for their birth.

Even if one does not believe in the supernatural aspects of typhoons like the Japanese, it is difficult view these powerfull pressure systems as anything less than extraordinary.

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