Katherine Donaldson (katharos) wrote,
Katherine Donaldson

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Buffet of Religion

Apparently 3/4 of weddings in Japan are "White Weddings" now, bride in a fairy tale dress, with foreign actor turned part time pastor in robes. Not for any religious reasons, but just because it's fashionable. This quote from the New York Times really struck me:

The boom in what some Japanese magazines call "foreign fake pastors" speaks volumes about modern Japan's attachment to appearances and its smorgasbord approach to religion. Japanese often choose Shintoism for childhood age ceremonies, Christianity for weddings and Buddhism for funerals.

I suppose there are a lot of weddings here that are more for show than religion. What struck me though... I think it's wonderful that there are cultures that feel free to pick and choose different religions for different ceremonies. Maybe it's not so much a freedom as a different form of tradition though? My cousin picked elements from many traditions for her wedding ceremony, but I think that's still seen here as being flakey woo-woo new-agey rather than at all respectable. And not feeling beholden to any particular religion myself, I'd like to feel the freedom to experience different ceremonies without feeling either 'fake' or as if I had to buy the whole pig. I appreciate religion as metaphor, not as literal truth, and the more metaphors the merrier.

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