Monthly Archives: April 2011

JLPT N2: struggling with grammar

After my recent, humiliating defeat on a practice test for the JLPT N2, I jumped right into studying grammar, which is a subject I hadn’t really covered yet. I assumed the higher JLPT exams were more focused on vocabulary, but … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, JLPT, Language | Leave a comment

Love your wife!

I found this website a long while back, but forgot about it until recently. This is the home page from the Japan Aisaika Organization (JAO), where aisaika (愛妻家) means “devoted husband” or “person who loves (his) wife”. The website and … Continue reading

Posted in Japan | 5 Comments

Post 1000

It’s Monday and this is post #1000 in the blog. It’s a bit of a half-truth because some posts were imported from the old “Level 8 Buddhist” blog, and I deleted a few posts over time that I just didn’t … Continue reading

Posted in Family | 2 Comments

The Fragility of Life

I feel bad for posting this on Sunday, especially since it’s Easter today here in the US, and we are spending time with our daughter at great-grandma’s house (my paternal grandmother) hunting Easter eggs. However, I had a surreal experience … Continue reading

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Ten More Great Buddhist Proverbs by Lafcadio Hearn

Recently, I posted a list of Buddhist proverbs I liked as compiled by famous Greco-Irish author and Japanophile, Lafcadio Hearn. This is part two, with commentaries by Hearn included where written by him: 47. この世は仮の宿 (Kono yo wa kari no … Continue reading

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Getting your fix

This comic from Xkcd is a very fun one, but if you read the alt caption (go to the original page, move your mouse over the image), you will see an interesting caption: “If you've never had sex, this is … Continue reading

Posted in Buddhism, Religion, Zelazny | 4 Comments

Quotations from the Hagakure

A while back I touched upon a famous Samurai treatise called the Hagakure. I didn’t like the book as much as hoped, but I thought there were some of the more interesting quotations I found in Book 1. All translations … Continue reading

Posted in Japan, Literature | 2 Comments

JLPT N2: Sometimes it takes an intervention…

I have about 8 months for the JLPT N2 coming up, and although I’ve been studying (mostly vocabulary), I wanted to see how prepared I was for the N2, and where my weak points are. So, I took an old … Continue reading

Posted in Japanese, JLPT, Language | 2 Comments

Japan: Volunteer efforts and the Emperor’s Visit

Today’s episode of Nihon Terebi News is a very interesting one to watch, particularly for Japanese language students. Today’s episode shows many efforts by volunteers in Japan to help cleanup the damage from the Great East Japan Earthquake,1 both young … Continue reading

Posted in Japan, Japanese, JLPT, Language | 4 Comments

Understanding Omamori

This is something I’ve wanted to post about for a while. For anyone who’s traveled in Japan, you cannot go very far without encountering one of these: These are small amulets you get in both Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples … Continue reading

Posted in Buddhism, Japan, Religion, Shinto, Travel | 14 Comments