By Andy Couturier

Raised within the tumult of Japan’s commercial powerhouse, the 11 women and men profiled during this e-book have all made the transition to sustainable, pleasing lives. they're this present day artists, philosophers, and farmers who dwell deep within the mountains of rural Japan. Their lives will be easy, but they're surrounded by way of the luxuries of nature, paintings, contemplation, scrumptious foodstuff, and an abundance of time. For example:

Atsuko Watanabe is an environmentalist and home-schooler who explores Christian mysticism whereas elevating her daughters in an outdated farmhouse Akira Ito is an ex–petroleum engineer who has turn into a painter and children’s ebook illustrator and explores the position of chi (life strength) within the universe via paintings and tune Kogan Murata grows rice and crafts stylish bamboo flutes that he performs for alms within the surrounding villages Jinko Kaneko is an exceptional artist and upholstery dyer who runs a Himalayan-style curry eating place within the Japan Alps by way of offering the trips of those ordinary—yet exceptional—people, Andy Couturier indicates how we can also go back and forth a significant course of residing easily, with admire for our groups and our common assets. once we depart in the back of the great burdens of salary hard work, debt, tension, and day-by-day busyness, we develop wealthy in a complete new approach. those eastern are pioneers in a feeling; drawing on conventional jap non secular knowledge, they've got cast a brand new sort of modernity, and of their luck is a lesson for us all: dwell a lifestyles that concerns.

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Additional info for A Different Kind of Luxury: Japanese Lessons in Simple Living and Inner Abundance

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Just as twentiethcentury American children could not learn the English alphabet without discovering that “ ‘Z’ is for ‘zebra,’ ” Japanese children could not learn the hiragana syllabary without learning that “ ‘A’ is for ‘ahiru,’ ” or duck, or that “ ‘TO’ is for ‘tora,’ ” or tiger. Such plain facts, addressed to children and by extension their parents, were given political color in a variety of ways. “Tigers are ferocious like [our] soldiers in China,” added one 1940s flashcard, bringing masculinity and empire into the simple act of learning syllables.

When the sources allow, this book is attendant to the embodied aspects of the stories it tells. It asks us to rethink who, or rather what, counts in our histories and how they should count. Even within the tightly controlled world of the zoo, animals managed to influence the world around them; they were not inert objects. People may have become ecological actors of global significance in modern times, but they shared the stage with a host of other creatures—from prions and pests to predators and pets.

6 To me, the Botanika kyo says that and something more. The Sutra’s format suggests a purpose at once sociological and cosmological. Like all religious texts, the “sutra” was concerned with the relationship between one world and another, and the short treatise argued for a new kind of separation between its readers and the natural world. The work gave lexical form (what Nishimura calls a “new systematics”) to Japan’s Animal Kingdom | 27 a broader shift in attitudes when it posited the existence Linnaean “kingdoms” (kai) as objective categories independent of human history and culture.

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A Different Kind of Luxury: Japanese Lessons in Simple Living and Inner Abundance by Andy Couturier


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