tōrō nagashi

Bob astutely pointed out that Yibi Hu’s animation in Josie’s Lalaland was probably inspired by the Japanese ceremony, Tōrō nagashi, which I’d seen pictures of, but never knew what I was really looking at…

“The Lantern floating is a time-honored Buddhist rite originating in Japan and conducted in order to pay respects to our ancestors and comfort the spirits of the deceased. During this Toro-Nagashi, or “lantern offerings on the water,” candle-lit lanterns are individually set afloat on the ocean and are said to ferry spirits ‘from the shore of delusion to the shore of salvation.'” (via mongrelheart’s flickr.)

Beautiful ceremony in every which way.

This first photo was taken by mongrelheart at a ceremony in Hawaii. The second photo is not Tōrō nagashi, but I had to post because it’s so magical. It was taken of the Pingsi International Lantern Festival in Taiwan by Daniel. Thousands gather at this festival to release their wishes to the sky. Come to think of it, maybe Yibi Hu’s animation was inspired by floating lantern festivals as well?

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