Bad luck goes down the toilet at Japan temple rite

Fri Feb 26, 2010 10:18am EST
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Scilla Alecci

OTA CITY, Japan (Reuters Life!) - Tired of an unsatisfying relationship, the sluggish economy or just your own bad habits? Now you really can flush it all down the toilet.

The Mantokuji temple in Japan's central Gumma prefecture was once an asylum for women who wanted to cut marital ties with their husbands, a function now made obsolete by modern divorce laws and family courts.

Now, the temple is a museum chronicling the history of divorce as well as a place to help people get rid of any bad karma, via a piece of paper they drop into latrines.

Visitors are given two options: the white squat toilet for the "enkiri", or cutting ties, or the black one for the "enmusubi", or tightening ties.

"I severed the bind with obesity" said 69-year-old, tea ceremony instructor Shizue Kurokawa, after flushing her "enkiri" tag in the white latrine.

"I'm getting fat and it's not healthy. From now on I'd like to lose weight, be in fine form and take care of my health."

According to temple officials, most visitors still come with the purpose of breaking up with their partners, but most do so very discreetly.

Those willing to talk to Reuters had less private wishes.   Continued...