A-Yokai-A-Day: Kanbari nyūdō

Today’s yokai is one of the scarier ones to be sure, but it is not scary like the previous ones. This is a special kind of scary; a creepy kind that gets under your skin, but also makes you laugh. Like a B-horror movie, maybe?

Japan does seem to have a fascination with toilet monsters, and today’s is an example of one of these. Unlike Hanako-san or Aka manto, Kanbari nyudo doesn’t slice you open or strangle you or kill you… he just watches you. And a big hairy priest watching you on the toilet is definitely a scary thing!

Interestingly, this was one of the hardest yokai to research for my book. Like Tamamo no Mae, his history has a lot of strange connections to China, and also like Tamamo no Mae, it is based on misinterpretations by Japanese authors long ago. The details of kanbari nyudo:s Chinese connection are written on yokai.com, so I won’t go into them here, but needless to say it took some effort to uncover the invented history behind the yokai, untangle it from the actual Chinese history it was based on, and then present it in a manner that makes sense.

I hope you enjoy reading it, and be careful when you use the toilet!

Kanbari nyuudou

Click the above link to read about kanbari nyudo, and get the book on amazon.com!

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