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These are the commonly used terms in Japan for ghosts: (怪談/かいだん) are terms used to categorize classic and traditional ghost stories, usually from the Edo Period.Or, there is also 実話怪談 (じつわ かいだん) or “real ghost stories,” which are usually personal stories, but many have gained popularity and are retold.The key characteristic of their appearance, however, is a small bowl or plate-like area on their head that must be kept wet or filled with water.
Like the snow, this woman has pale white skin, is usually dressed in white, and traditionally has long black hair.
She is very beautiful, and floats along the snow leaving no trace behind to show that she has passed.
In tamer stories, 雪女 will sometimes let victims go if they’re beautiful or young.
Do you think you’re good-looking enough to survive?
Japanese stories featuring ghosts are firmly rooted in the belief in the spirit world.
Ghosts arise when someone dies and their spirit cannot move on to the afterlife, either because the funeral rites weren’t completed or because the person died violently or with unfinished business.The general story behind object ghosts is that when human tools become older and older, they can become ghosts.There isn’t necessarily a particular story about the 唐傘お化け, but it can be commonly seen in depictions of haunted houses and is usually used as a representative character for ghosts in Japan.You can learn more about Japan’s eccentric spirits and other cultural aspects through Fluent U’s authentic videos.Fluent U takes real-world videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons.A successful spirit is believed to join its ancestors in the afterlife to watch over their remaining living family.Spirits are believed to return once a year to the world of the living, which is when the living honor their ancestors and give thanks to those that are watching over them.The more sinister stories have 河童 luring people or animals, usually horses, into deep water so that all the 河童 can drag them down and drown them.A strange off-shoot of the 河童 stories is that these creatures love cucumbers.There’s no telling if it could scare you to death, so watch out!Studio Ghibli’s includes a scene with a のっぺら坊, which in the story is actually a shapeshifting raccoon parading as a のっぺら坊.