Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Abalone diving ceremony

Today according to Australian Eastern Standard Time when this item was posted

Shirongo Matsuri, Shirahige Shrine, Sugashima, Mie Prefecture, Japan
On July 11, white-costumed ama women divers of the district dive for abalone. When a note is sounded from a triton horn, the women dive into the water, competing to be the first to catch an abalone. The women who catch the first male and female abalone offer them at the shrine in order to ensure safe sea journeys and an abundant harvest, and become the following year's head divers. The numbers of abalone have decreased over the years as the environment has been degraded, and since the time that divers started wearing wetsuits and were able to dive longer in the cold sea. Diving is controlled by the government, and divers may work only 25 days of the year.

The word ama literally means 'sea person'. Japanese tradition holds that the practice of ama divers may be 2,000 years old. Traditionally, and even as recently as the 1960s, ama dived wearing only a loincloth. Even in modern times, ama dive without scuba gear or air tanks, in dives that typically last about 80 seconds ...

Categories: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home

eXTReMe Tracker