Ocean Day (Umi no Hi) 2014

ryuujin

Ryuujin, the Japanese Dragon God of the Sea

Today was the Japanese public holiday called Umi no Hi, or “Ocean Day” in English. It’s not a religious holiday at all, but one of several Japanese public holidays designated by the government, and is supposed to be a time to be grateful for the ocean’s bounty.

One of the perks of working where I do (a Japanese governmental organisation) is that I get some of the Japanese public holidays off as well as the English ones, and fortunately my husband is also off work for the school holidays, so we decided to go out on a day-trip to somewhere very appropriate to the day: Brighton.

Even more appropriately, we decided to spend part of our day there at the Sea Life Centre, and had a lovely time watching rays, sharks, turtles, jellyfish and lots of other sea life (we can’t wait to take our nephew here as he’s really into sea animals at the moment thanks to The Octonauts!). We followed this by walking on Brighton Pier as the sun began to set, and enjoyed watching the waves and enjoying the sea air.

It was a good opportunity to do what Ocean Day is meant to inspire – reflect upon the life-giving power of the sea, the beauty of the creatures within, and the need to respect and protect the ocean.

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Filed under Nature & Environment, Places, Rituals & Festivals, Shinto / Japanese Religion

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