March252014

Anonymous asked: How did the moon tribe fall?

I have my headcanons but no one knows D:

March22014

gummyninjagirl01 asked: Is it just me or does this blog have more information on okami than the actual wikia

I go a lot deeper into it than the wikia does. :) You won’t find much general information on the game, but I go as far as I reasonably can into what went into it.

February42014

Anonymous asked: I've seen you mention the grave in N. Ryoshima before, but in talking to the little girl nearby a thought occurred. Is is possible this little girl, who always remains by the tree (other children disappear into homes at night save for Camellia) could actually be the spirit of the lone grave? I mean, you need the catwalk to get up there, and I don't recall there being ANY treasure. Just the grave. And she tells you about the tower. So... Possibility?

Ooh, that’s an interesting hypothesis. That grave is such a curious location. At best I think I can tell you it’s a definite possibility. I’m just about to enter N. Ryoshima in my current playthrough, so I’ll check around. c:

January252014

Anonymous asked: I noticed that characters like Kagu wears those golden bells that have Gohei on them, are those bells based of something?

Bells are used to call gods at shrines, and are said to ward off evil spirits, which is why they are often attached to charms such as omamori. Probably both of those associations, along with their common use with gohei/shimenawa, are why Kagu wears them.

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(Sorry for taking so long to respond ;3;)

December202013

I’m finally done with the semester! I’m going to sleep for ten thousand days and then hopefully get back to this blog. Maybe I am sleeping? This feels like a dream.

I wish everyone who still has finals the best of luck, and to everyone a Merry Christmas! I hope you enjoy/are enjoying your respective holidays as well :D

November162013

sarurunkamui:

Sakuya’s dialogue here is actually really interesting because she uses  a specifically Buddhist term, utsushiyo (present world; transient world), even though she is a god drawn from Shinto lore. Shinto and Buddhism have coexisted for centuries in Japan, and various Buddhist sects usually did not exclude Shinto but actually worked to explain the how it fit in. Although the Shinto folklore in Okami is the most prevalent, and the easiest for us to see, combined with the presence of temples and priests, karma, and vocabulary like this, it seems to me that Okami is actually set within an ultimately Buddhist universe.

November132013

Samurai Dandy

I used to think that Samurai Dandy was simply the remnant of the “Westerner’s Peninsula” that had been cut out of Sei-an. (Western flair: why not?) Turns out that trendy Christian samurai really did enjoy Elizabethan fashion, though, and really did wear those ruff collars, and sometimes other aspects of English clothing design.

I learned this in my Japanese Literature class yesterday, after which my professor showed us this picture, and I had a minor freak-out.

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Look familiar?

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November102013

And the winner of the giveaway is princessbraus! Enjoy :D

In other news, between the end of the semester and doing NaNoWriMo, I am SUPER SWAMPED and so I won’t be posting for a while. (シ_ _)シ Sorry!

P.S. I hope to do another giveaway someday…

October272013

Okami Tea Giveaway!

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To celebrate 700 followers on this blog, and also because I just finished Okami again, I’m going to give away some Okami tea blends! Whether you’re fresh in the world of tea, a loose-leaf veteran, or anywhere in between, this could be a great chance to try something new. Anyway, what could be better than Okami and free stuff?

On November 10, I will pick one random winner. Likes and reblogs both count. I will ship to anywhere in the world! If the winner is within the contiguous US, you may choose any two 3-ounce pouches of tea you like. However, due to the cost of international shipping, a winner outside that zone may choose one. (This stipulation is subject to change depending on my funds when this ends, though!)

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Good luck! c:

October252013

Princess Kaguya

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The legend of Kaguya-hime, known as the Tale of the Bamboo-Cutter, dates back to the 10th century, and is the earliest surviving Japanese narrative. Her story is largely simplified, but kept mostly intact compared to other stories in Okami, except for the iron bamboo shoot. This tale is considered proto-science fiction, so it seems all the more fitting that Okami took it a step further into modern sci-fi.

The story, briefly, is as follows: 

One day, an old bamboo cutter happened across a strange, glowing bamboo stalk within a grove. He cut it open to find a baby girl the size of his thumb. He and his wife had no children, so he was overjoyed to find her, and brought her home where the old couple raised her lovingly. They named her Nayotake-no-Kaguya-hime, the Princess of the Bending Bamboo that Scatters Light. After that, whenever the old man cut down a stalk of bamboo, he would find a gold nugget inside, and he became rich.

Kaguya-hime, meanwhile, grew to an ordinary size and became an extremely beautiful young woman. Hearing of her beauty, five princes came to ask for her hand in marriage. The man didn’t want her to marry them, but the princes convinced him to let her choose among them. Kaguya-hime told each of them to bring to her an item that would be impossible to find, such as the Buddha’s begging bowl or a jewel from the neck of a dragon. Three of them tried to bring her fakes, one gave up, and one was killed or severely wounded on his quest, depending on the story. All of them failed.

After that, the Emperor himself asked for her hand in marriage, but she again refused, arguing that she was not of this country. 

Kaguya-hime started to act more erratic, and her parents grew worried. That summer, when she gazed at the full moon, she began to cry. She revealed that she was from the Moon and must return to her people there.

When the time came for her to return, the Emperor himself set guards all around the house to keep the people of the Moon from getting to her, but it was all in vain. The beings from the Moon blinded the guards with light, and Kaguya announced that though she loved all her family and friends on Earth, she had to leave. She wrote letters of apology to her parents and the Emperor, giving her parents her robe as a momento, and the Emperor a small vial with an elixir of immortality. As she handed the note to an Imperial guard, she was adorned with a feather robe that allows heavenly beings to fly between the heavens and the Earth. Her parents watching with tears in their eyes, the lunar entourage brought her home to the capital of the moon, Tsuki-no-Miyako.

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The story doesn’t quite end there; her parents, wrought with sadness, became sick and bedridden. When the Emperor received Kaguya-hime’s letter, he asked which mountain reached closest to Heaven. So he sent his men to burn the letter at the summit of the great mountain of Suruga Province, along with the elixir, for he couldn’t bear to live forever without her. He hoped that the smoke would reach her and bear her his message.

Legend holds that the name of the mountain, Mt. Fuji, came from the word for “immortality” (fushi or fuji). The name’s kanji mean “mountain abounding with warriors”, which were perhaps inspired by the image of the Emperor’s army rising up the mountain to burn the letter. Finally, since this story arose during a time when the volcano was still active, it was said that the smoke from the letter still burns to this day.

[From a linguistic standpoint, since one of my professors mentioned this once, the name “Fuji” did not quite fit Japanese phonemes at the time it seems to have been given; it is thought to have come from the language of the people who lived in Japan before the ethnic Japanese. The Ainu are descended from these people.]

In different versions of the story, there are various reasons for why Kaguya-hime was sent to Earth. Some say it was a punishment for a crime; some say it was to protect her from a celestial war. Some also say that the gold the bamboo cutter found was compensation sent for the cost of raising her.

The Moon Tribe is depicted as a technologically advanced race, but not a divine one. Thus Kaguya rides a bamboo rocket, and is equipped with a helmet like an astronaut’s and what appears to be a jet pack, instead of a feathered hagoromo. She wears a junihitoe-styled robe with five layers (instead of the customary twelve), and a pleated train (mo, which were commonly white) with a rocket/moon motif. The bamboo leaves on her head resemble rabbit ears, furthering the moon motif, as the Japanese see a rabbit in the moon instead of a man. (The rabbit is also seen as pounding mochi, hence Yumigami’s design and the reason for the moon god being a rabbit.)

All female nobility and ladies in waiting wore robes like junihitoe, but the color combinations one chose spoke of one’s rank and character. Specific combinations would suggest personality traits or a sensitivity to the season, and some colors were restricted to certain ranks. The outer color of Kaguya’s robe may be a medium shade of kurenai, a color that was reserved for royalty, referring to her status as a princess.

More on Heian female court wear

Some color combinations

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