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August: The Return of Souls

August is peak summer season in Japan.  We can look forward to some of the most spectacular fireworks displays and festivals in the world, ...


New beginnings. We all have a beginning. Where did you begin? In less than 3 days there will be a new beginning for all of us when we ring in the new year, the best time of year. We let our hair down, throw caution to the wind, do things we wind up regretting the next day. My first taste of Japanese sake was a new beginning for me, and is partly what led me here to Japan. That first sip…That first kiss…That first whiff…. Hot sake lubricating the wheels of social interaction led me to explore and learn about how this god water was made. A matron taught me how to appreciate her own native cuisine by first teaching me how food, sake and her work well together.

Gambrinus, the patron saint of beer brewing and legendary king of Flanders, had a beginning from a matron. Like Gambrinus, my first taste of god came from a woman. In Gambrinus's case his was the mighty Isis, an Egyptian goddess, ideal mother and matriarch of nature and magic, and goddess of motherhood. Mines was the Japanese Jukujo, goddess of all beauty and motherhood, and essentially life itself.

Language and culture is transmitted by the tongue and the touch. As humans we learn not only through our senses, but our olfaction's as well. This is the purest way anyway. The brain responds better to touch than words alone. But when words and touch are combined in synchronistic passion they yield the greatest results.

Gambrinus owes everything to Isis, his mother goddess. I owe everything I am today to the Japanese matron saint goddess. For them I am truly grateful. I have been reinvented three times. I was a hatchling laid by a Japanese super mom. I was nurtured and fed for years from the nectar of her sweet effervescence. Her energy absorbed and redefined my mortal coil. I was pushed through to the other side.
Dante had lost his guide Virgil on his ascension out of hell simply because Virgil was eternally condemned to the pit, yet Dante in flesh form could make it out unscathed? It was Beatrice's love that sustained Dante's painful rise out that dark and horrid abyss.
A new beginning.


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