Obon: Union of Heaven and Earth
Every year in mid-summer when rice paddies are poignantly green and fields are joyous with produce, three very special days, called Obon, are set aside for worship and for prayer. During that period, ancestors make a sacred and special pilgrimage to this earth’s dimension. They long to commune, to bless, and to be with those they left behind.
In return, the living flock to graves, adorning them with flowers, incense, sake, and prayer. Cities vacate as people return to hometowns, to the beloved land that holds generations of family devotion, duty, and bonds.
At night in particular the souls of the deceased come alive, haunting graveyards and temples. They are seeking loved ones, hovering close, eager to give needed assistance and care.