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The Ainu Essay

The Ainu are found in the northern Japan on the island of Hokkaido. Ainu people are distinct from the people of Japan .The Ainu are smaller in height then the people of Japan. Men wear large beards and their moustaches are a sign of beauty and their noses are straight and long.

One of the strangest thing in their culture is the sacrifice of a bear they treat bears as their own children and when they are big enough they sacrifice the bear .Then Ainu people think that bear is a strong spirit so a women is made in charge to take care of the cub when its 2 -3 years old they Ainu sacrifice the bear the men drink the blood of the bear and take off its head . later during family ceremonies the skin of the bear finds a prominent place in the house drinks and food are served to the skin of the bear like a honoured desk .Bear is considered as a hero for the Ainu because it taught them to fish hunt weave and so on Ainu live I rectangular huts which are made up of bundles .Ainu live In a climate where snow can last for 6-7 months and is a really rainy area in summer to keep a house form people usually wear warm clothes made out of bear skin and dug a hole inside an house and do bornfire usually chimneys and small holes are made to let escape smoke form outside the room .Ainu usually sleep over platforms made up of wood covered with rush mats they slept dressed because the house only had 2 windows .

Ainu religious views are animist all the objeacts such as volcanoes fire water were added as a spirit. They belive when a person dies the spirit is released it could be good or evil harming living beings or people . To avoid this ainus usually worked on wood representation with a human form called ianos . Ianos are usually simple sticks made by cuts of the knife In Ainus culture women are independent till marrying after getting married they are under mens will . Ainu women adorned their hands forehead mouth and mouth online with blue tattoos . Women in the ainu culture do work such as gathered wood , cooked food , look after their kids and make clothes etc. The Ainu women used to make mate, bags ,nets using elm bark . The bark is soaked and and left until large soft threads can be removed . The women wind them in balls later it is woven coarse looms.

In the Ainu village the most important person is the shaman. He is the person who has contact with the spirits. Shaman can also cure diseases and is the leader of the village. When a person is sick and asks for help from the shaman the shaman waits till the sunset when he arrives to a sick person a bass drum is played to call the evil spirit who has caused that sickness and the shaman and then they start to dance in a uncontrolled way and in the end he falls down in trance at his return before the amazed eyes of the assistance he extracted out of the body of the patient a cause of the disease a stone a bark once this operation is done healing is immediately required some times a person dies because of the evil spirit is so strong .

When a person dies in Ainu culture his family make a large bonfire in a hut and send messengers to inform his friends and relatives when they arrive burial is done a dead body is wrapped in clothes which are torn from a side and at its side his goods are placed and then sacrifices are offered to the spirits that they can welcome the new spirit to their family of dead the family celebrates a great feast after the burial and at the next day the body is wrapped and buried in a tomb if it was a man there is an arrow placed on the tomb and if it was a girl a strip is hanged.

The Ainu people eat crabs, lobsters, scallops, mussels, oysters and even turtles. In winter fishing is done by making a hole on the flat layer of ice and in summer fishing is done by using nets, rods, hooks and bows on the stick of the bow poison is placed on the nib of it . The most good trick of fishing of Ainu was a dog they train the dog in special ways. The Ainu people are kind and friendly they welcome their visitors but they will have to follow their culture. When you are entering in an Ainu house you must clear your throat and if invited inside you must leave your shoes outside the house then he will go and sit near a fire and the owner of the house may offer him for example a pipe of tobacco . They also offer sticks which they use to correct their moustaches while drinking because they are so big that they can can enter dishes they are very good people and you can also visit them if you want.

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