Last week’s theme was so popular that I thought it would be fun to do another mini-theme this week. Today’s entry is not actually a yokai, but is deeply rooted in foklore and mythology, so I think it counts anyway. This is a topic I’ve actually written about on this blog before, but not as A-Yokai-A-Day. I wrote that post while researching for The Hour of Meeting Evil Spirits, and today I wanted to share the refined version that eventually made it into the book, along with the illustration, which I haven’t shared on this site before.
Meido is the Japanese underworld, but it’s not Hell. It’s more like the path to hell, or purgatory, or Hades. It’s important to note that Meido comes from the Buddhist/Taoist traditions of China, not Shinto. There is an additional Shinto afterlife/underworld, but that is not related to Meido, and is really only found in ancient mythology before Buddhism was brought to Japan.
Sine I’ve written a lot about it before, and the entry itself is quite long, I won’t say much else in this post. I hope you can zoom in on the illustration and follow along with the story. The first blog post I did on this included a huge number of images from Buddhist hell scrolls, and it was a challenge to fit them all into one painting. The end result looks almost as if you should be searching for Waldo (I promise he’s not in there!). If you look closely, you’ll even see some of the other characters we’ll look at this week!
Click on the image below to read the entry: