A Buddhist Memorial Ceremony For An Aborted Essay

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Mizuko Kuyo is a Buddhist memorial ceremony for an aborted, miscarried, or still born fetuses which appears to have become a public phenomenon during the 1970s in Japan. Muzak Kuyo became significantly more popular during the postwar era caused a combination of increased legal access, post-war pregnancy boom and post-war recession. Because of historical crises and overpopulation, Japan has practiced abortion through its history. Unlike other popular religions in other countries, abortion is not as harshly criticized in Japanese culture. However, that does not mean that feelings of guilt and grief are nonexistent. In an effort to offer relief to these problems caused by the death of the child, the Japanese have practiced Mizuko Kuyo for about two centuries. These memorial rites are centered around Jizo, known to be the Bodhisattva who is seen as the protector of dead children. When honoring the Jizo, the aborted fetus is believed to make it to the other world peacefully. Through the study of this particular Buddhist ritual practiced in Japan, we can also further examine the role that women played in the religions of Japan. Gender discrimination is one factor that has brought the negative spotlight upon this practice. A signed consent of a man is required to perform an abortion under the current law in Japan. If abortion is seen as a sin, it should be that the man involved in creating the child feels as responsible as the woman carrying the child. But in fact, when the…

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