First, some good news. The pesky "secure email form" that stopped working on Sunday has been fixed. You can now use the secure form located at https://www.jastusa.com/Merchant2/contact.mv? to send us your J-List orders securely.
Before I came to Japan, I had the impression the Japanese people were not very religious. I was surprised to find that this wasn't always the case -- actually, I spent my first Sunday in Japan in mass at the Maebashi Baptist Church, which was a surprising experience. The Mormon Church is very active in Japan, with many missionaries from the U.S. recruiting new members, offering free English lessons to Japanese who want to study English as a way of bringing their message to others. There are even Jehovah's Witnesses here, amazingly enough, and they even have the same "look and feel" of American J.W.'s.
Religiously, Japan is an interesting place with an interesting history. The original religion of Japan is Shinto, an animalistic religion that worships the "spirits" (kami) in natural objects like trees and rocks. Buddhism came in through Korea and was "grafted onto" Shinto, so that the two are often inseparable, and Japanese often don't know if a certain ceremony they're performing is Buddhist or Shinto. True to human nature, there are many, many sects of Buddhism, with differences so minor that I can't tell them apart at all -- Japanese get equally confused when trying to tell what's different about Catholicism and the various Protestant churches. As a rule, Buddhism is a quiet part of Japanese life, and you never encounter "evangelists" trying to spread their style of religion. The exception is the church of Soka Gakkai, an interesting evangelical sect of Buddhism that was founded in 1930. I've happened to know several members of this church, and they've always been very forward about their religion, actively trying to tell others about it and spread the word about their beliefs.
We're finally ready to take the wraps off of J-Mate. J-Mate is a new site we're sponsoring, which will hopefully grow to be a "source for Japanese AV and contemporary hentai culture." In addition to reviews of many cool things from Japan including Japan's unique bishoujo games, we'll offer something we're very pleased with -- translations of interviews with Japan's lovely AV idols. J-Mate can be accessed at http://www.jmate.com/ . Since our reviews are going to be submitted by readers, we'd love it if you'd write up something and allow us to post it.
While we continue to work on the upcoming J-List site renewal, we've got a great update of products you. This evening's update, we've got some great new items for you, including:
- First, we've got some great magazines for you, including the new Gal's Dee, featuring extremely busty Japanese gals like Uruka Kitamura, Anna Ohura and more
- Also, we've got a nice rare item -- some classic and premium backissues of popular Japanese magazines. See them at the top of magazine page 2
- For photobook lovers, we've got a great selection of new items, including all-new hardcover photobooks and the new Tennyo, featuring the lovely Maiko Kazano, the dynamite erotic nude of Mariko Kawano, and many more items
- If you like Garo Aida, we have his excellent photobook "Love Best Selection" back in stock for you
- For fans of Japan's hardcore S&M photobooks, we've got several back in stock for you, with bondage, anal and other themes amply covered
- If you love Japan's erotic manga, we've got a large number of new items for you, including the long-awaited vol. 4 of the Blue Eyes manga series, and many other new and back-in-stock items, from the popular "love and sex" manga artist Yutaka Tanaka to fresh stock of the popular "Erotic Heart Mother," and more
- We have several nice doujinshi for you too, including some excellent items based on popular shows that should sell out quickly -- check the doujinshi page if you're interested
- For Japanese adult video fans, we have a great mix of Azumi Kawashima's best erotic performances, along with a super "beautiful valley" video from SOD, featuring some great breast fetish material
- For DVD lovers, we've got an extremely cool sexy idol DVD for Anna Ohura lovers -- the wonderful region-free DVD features released footage, photos and more
- If you love Japan's bishoujo games, we've got the "complete data" art book of Brave Soul, the excellent fantasy RPG from Crowd. This title is being translated for future release by Peach Princess
- Like hopelessly cute things from Japan? We've got some more wacky hand fans for you, with Doraemon and the loveable "Tare Panda" (drooping panda) printed on them -- see the Anime & Toys page
- Experience the enigma of Japanese "melon soda" on the Japanese snacks page
- Finally, newly added items on the Wacky Things from Japan pages include a great foot massage board, more funky Japanese notebooks with bizarre English on them, and other items. Check them out!
The newest upcoming "pretty girl" game from Peach Princess is Water Closet: The Forbidden Chamber. A great recent release, this title was originally released under Will's Guilty label, and features some great game play and themes. In this game, you're not a guy -- you choose one of five female characters, and play through the game's many paths as one of those characters. The interlinked story is great fun, and we think you'll like this new game. It should ship in about two weeks, but you can preorder it now and get free shipping, while supporting Peach Princess's efforts to bring these great games to you.
Are you burning to find out what happened to Tomomi Kahala, the Japanese singer who went to America to try to get a singing career started? If so, look no further than CM-Watch, where you can see her latest commercial in Quicktime format, in addition to other Japanese TV commercials, including a giant feminine napkin that protects a city. See it all at http://www.cm-watch.com, our gift to you for your support of J-List.