ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Aokigahara Forest

Updated on April 14, 2015

At the base of Mount Fuji is a forest that has gone from being a beacon of sheer beauty and splendor to an area of great horror and tragedy. This place is Aokigahara; otherwise known as the suicide forest of Japan.

*Disclaimer: The stories, views and opinions in this article are not for the impressionable or faint of heart.*

Japan's Most Eerie Forest
Japan's Most Eerie Forest | Source

Less than one hundred miles west of Tokyo lies a forest at the base of Mount Fuji masked in legend, lore and an eerie silence. Locally, it is known as Jukai, which translates into "Sea of Trees." In 864 Mount Fuji erupted violently sending a cascade of hot, molten lava trickling down its sides leaving a path of devastation in its wake. Jukai grew up through that dried lava into a densely packed forest. Although the forest itself is not very big, only around fourteen square miles, because of this high density of trees and dark areas since the sun does not penetrate deeply inside the forest, many people who venture inside get lost in the twists and turns never to find the way out again. Could this be the reason so many people view this as the best place to escape everyday life? Could a forest itself truly hide you from the reality you are scared to face? Is this forest truly tainted with demons, ghosts and lore? See for yourself as we dive deeper into the Jukai.

Trees seem to levitate within the forest.
Trees seem to levitate within the forest.

The Beginning Of The Legend

Aokigahara is shrouded in mystery and lore. It all started in 1960 when Seicho Matsumoto published a novel by the name of Kuroi Kaiju. The book was a love story between a beautiful young lady and the most handsome young man she had ever known. As love stories go, this one has a tragic ending when the couple decides to end there lives. The place they chose is none other than Aokigahara. No true blame can be placed on this book though because the suicides in Aokigahara started long before this book was written.

Then in 1993, Wataru Tsurumui’s published the bestseller entitled "The Complete Suicide Manual." is a book that describes various modes of suicide and even recommends Aokigahara as the perfect place to die. Apparently this book is also a common find in the forest, usually not too far away from a suicide victim and their belongings. Undoubtedly, the most common method of suicide in the forest is hanging.

The book that seems to have started it all.
The book that seems to have started it all.

Because Of This Book?

As stated above, it seems many a legend surround this graven book and it's apparent reason for being. It shakes me to the core to think a book would have such an impact on someone that they would choose to end it all.

Or Because Of Japanese Folklore

According to some, ubasute was also common in the earlier years in Japan's history. Ubasute refers to the custom that was allegedly performed in Japan, where an elderly relative was carried to a mountain, or some other remote, desolate place, and left there to die, either by dehydration, starvation, or exposure. In one allegory that can be found, a son carries his mother up a mountain on his back. During the journey, she stretches out her arms, catching the twigs and scattering them in their wake, so that her son will be able to find the way home. Whatever the case may be, the forest at the base of Mt. Fuji is tainted beyond words. Light needs to be restored and faith brought to those who may have lost hope. We need to become beacons for lost souls.

The Suicide Forest Located At The Base Of Mt. Fuji

Who knew that a place of sheer beauty and awe could be the last thing that so many people saw before they took there own lives.

Out Of Respect

For the families who have lost loved ones in this forest, the images I have chosen to share show what is left behind. Not only are the items pictured what is left behind, but imagine the number of families, on average one hundred per year, who live the rest of there days without there loved one next to them. It just does not feel right to post macabre images to get a point across in my writing.

A wallet that has been rummaged through in the forest.
A wallet that has been rummaged through in the forest. | Source
If only words remained.
If only words remained. | Source
Beyond eerie.
Beyond eerie. | Source

The Authors Thoughts

It pains me as a writer to see people without some sort of hope. Life is always going to have tough moments that make us wonder why we are even here. Questions will race in our minds because we do not know all the answers. We are not supposed to know all of these answers. Death is not the only answer to a life that may be in turmoil. As human beings we need to learn to ban together to keep atrocities like this from being a normal way of life. Jukai has a beauty all its own tarnished with the history of suicide and pain. We as a nation need to stand up and reach out to those who may be having problems that need to be talked about. More listening. Less speaking.

A Short Clip of Destination Truth Investigating Aokigahara, Japan

I Want To Hear From You!

Is this forest truly haunted?

See results

One Of Many Unidentified Suicide Notes From The Forest

"I am called here by the guardian spirit of the mountain, on which I shall destroy myself today. For I tire of loving those that cannot love themselves, and I am sick of fighting those who will not surrender their attack.

When I looked to the blue majestic peak of Fuji it beckoned me, this sacred place where elegant cedars meet the sky. I can now look toward the east and I am lonely for all that I cannot have.

I've said good-bye with a kiss to the girl that urgently prayed for my redemption and I've cursed those that sought my destruction. Yet this is not surrender to them, for the choice is mine, and mine alone. I want nothing more from mankind that only seeks power to corrupt others, and is destined only to destroy innocent human live with their greed and for their pleasure. For this I will no longer be a victim to their evil plotting.

I alone determine my destiny and thus I choose to place my feet into the nether world. A world where nothingness is vast and deluged with the other countless humans that have gone here before me, the dead that can no longer smell the sweetness of baking bread, for they no longer breathe.

I shall soon leave this world, and I will ride a white horse toward the morning sunrise in the shadow of this shallow mountain. No longer bearing witness to the battle for the struggle of life, for I have chosen my own destiny, and for this I am content...because today I am on the mountain."

Azusa Hayano Talks About His Experiences In The Jukai

Suicide Is Not The End Nor The Answer

We all go through problems in life. We all have thoughts that the world may be better off without us. This is not the case. We were put on this Earth for a reason. If these types of thoughts ever grace your mind call the following hotline immediately.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline @ 1-800-273-8255.

A storm creeps into the forest.
A storm creeps into the forest. | Source

© 2015 Amy Mitchell


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)