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The Differences Between Japanese and Western Culture

Japan is a fascinating nation with a rich history to go along with their modern contributions to the global package society. Whether you intend to visit or are simply interested in gaining more knowledge about their culture so you can better understand the world, you are sure to appreciate the traditions and values that have been handed down for generations.

While most folks think of the main four or five islands in the nation, it is actually comprised of almost 7,000 separate islands. Many of these are very tiny and are not currently inhabited. The people of Japan reside in less than 500 of the islands that are protected as part of the nation of Japan. This is exciting because it provides an even richer area of study when you consider that many of these smaller places have developed some of their own local traditions.

In order to begin your studies of the traditions and values of the Japanese culture, you need to start with their history. Although you might cringe when you think about studying history, this is not like your high school and college courses where you were forced to memorize various dates and events without any real context. Outside of the classroom, you have the opportunity to gain new information in ways that are enjoyable and useful for expanding your understanding, rather than rote memorization of disjointed facts.

You need to understand the history of the nation if you are going to really grasp the traditions and values that drive the citizens of Japan. Without that context, many of the celebrations and choices that are made by Japanese people might be hard to understand. By seeing how the evolution of their traditions and values was shaped by historical events, you have the opportunity to step outside of your own cultural training and get a glimpse of theirs. While it is impossible to completely remove the lens of your own teachings, it is possible to open and expand your mind to others and their experiences. This includes individuals as well as entire cultures.

If you don’t want to spend countless hours detailing thousands of years of history, there is a simple solution that will still provide you the bare bones of the history to begin building upon. Find some books that are designed for young adults to learn more about historical events. Ask your local librarian for assistance if necessary.

Though American culture focuses on putting self first, Japan emphasizes the group. This is one of the factors in the success of their businesses. The employees work together rather than competing against each other for recognition.

You will also discover that the people of Japan understand a great deal about the human body, enabling them to create various forms of martial arts that are still in use today. Yoga hails from this great nation, as do countless other health-based traditions and values.

Learn more about Japan and their citizens. Doing so will enrich your life in ways you can’t even begin to imagine yet!