Image: View of Mt Fuji, by Yoshida Hiroshi (1876-1950)
Ink: Preface to "Fuji-san" (2012) by Randy Taguchi:
What do the Japanese cherish and protect as a spiritual sanctuary? For a great many people, the answer is Mount Fuji.
Mount Fuji occupies a strange and wondrous place in the Japanese imagination. When you set your eyes on its shining, majestic beauty, you feel a sense of gain for some reason. You can't help but tell someone that you saw the mountain today, and that it was lovely to behold. The beauty of Mount Fuji lifts your spirits, telling you that everything is all right, telling you to choose life. I wonder how many lives have been saved in this way.
How many Japanese hearts Mount Fuji has inspired with hope for so long now. I wrote this anthology of stories as an expression of my veneration and appreciation for this life-affirming mountain; it is my personal tribute to Fujisan.
Even as the times change, Mount Fuji continues to remain divine and awe-inspiring throughout the ages. We keep looking up at it with genuine gratitude in our hearts. And this simple act, I believe, is in itself a true way to pray.