Romance In Japan


In Japan, less than 1 percent of the population is Christian, but the country is very tolerant of many faiths. Christmas is celebrated by the Japanese Christians but is also looked upon as a commercial holiday; many do not understand the traditions and religious implications associated with Christmas in the United States. Japanese Christians hold Christmas plays and other religious traditions on Christmas Eve. Christmas lights, decorations and displays are put up anytime from the end of October on. On December 24 and 25, families purchase a Christmas Cake to help celebrate the holiday. However, the Christmas season is greatly overshadowed by the Japanese New Year celebrations.

Christmas Eve in Japan has many romantic innuendos, due largely in part to television hype. In comparison to the United States, the Christmas season in Japan is more like Valentine's Day. Serious couples spend the night before Christmas at romantic restaurants or hotels, and boys and girls are permitted to be extremely affectionate. Couples also exchange Christmas presents. Elderly couples may attend a concert or a theater performance.

In Japan, presents are exchanged between romantic interests as well as close friends. The closer or more romantically involved two people are, the more expensive the gift, but most of the gifts tend to be an article of clothing, jewelry or flowers. Lately, make-it-yourself gifts are becoming more of a trend. Businesses, teachers, family friends and more tend to give end of the year gifts, more out of an obligatory nature. These gifts can and are often returned for other things of an equal value.




Copyright 2003 Mary E. Bishop