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Living Like A Goddess: Uzume; Laughing in the Face of Life

Updated on May 29, 2014

The Lady of Good Humor

When we think about the Japanese culture I know that most of us get a sense of proper and organized. we see people who may secretly enjoy the bawdy, good humored aspect of life. What most often gets looked over is the goddess Uzume, a Shinto Kami know for her love of the bawdy and humorous.

Lady Uzume is the name of the goddess who was able to tempt the Japanese Sun goddess from her hiding place. Her methods were downright sensual and humorous as she did a strip tease and danced before the entire celestial congregation. It was the laughter that erupted that brought the goddess forth from her hiding place and thus the sun light back into the world.

Uzume Painting

Uzume in Modern Japan

The dance of Uzume is still performed even today in Japan. Named the Kagura dance, her dance is sometimes referred to as the mother of all dances in Japan. On special occasions in the Shinto shrines of Japan, the dance of Uzume is performed and considered its only special, performing arts in Japan, often times in the Shimane prefecture of Japan and by the miko or shrine maidens of the temples. These dances are done in accordance to the turn of the calender and at certain times of "harvest" are often times when the dance is performed.

Uzume no Mai Video

In our lives there are moments when it feels like the sun has disappeared and light shall never come again. There are days where we would rather hide away in the cave and never ever come out again. And trust me, is is really hard to come out on those most gruesome days. Even right now, as I write this article, the days seem darker as money issues draw in closer and tighten their grip on my throat, choking the air right out of me. Sound familiar?

So what do you do when the sun is hiding Ask Lady Uzume, you dance and laugh and draw the joy out of yourself once more! Find that sun, command and demand for it to come back! No one is perfect, and finding the light takes steps, but any step forward is progress.


Reminding Yourself

  1. First things first, you've got to take a second to breathe. Calm your mind even if it is only for five minutes and just let yourself relax.
  2. When you've let go of all of the stress, start to think about what it is that you enjoy. What makes you smile? What makes you happy even on a bad day? When you have a couple in mind, write them down.
  3. Once you have one list, post it somewhere, where you are going to see it every day. Keep it in a place where you will be reminded of all of the things you love. These can be either small things or very sentimental things. Nothing is too small.
  4. Last thing, look at this list. How many of these things have you done? How many of these people have you seen? Today? Yesterday? Last week? Do one, talk to one person, experience one of these things. Remember, one step is still a step. The light won't come out without its Uzume to entice it, so remember those lists, no matter how short or long, small or big, old or new, find something on it and experience it, let it fill you with only the kind of joy the things that make us most happy do.


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