Have you ever been to a haunted house, that had an alternate purpose”? If you don’t know what I’m talking about then you probably don’t live in the bible belt or have never heard of a “Hell House”. During the Halloween season, you might go out to get your heart racing to see spooky ghost and creepy ghouls. But some churches make horror based houses that tell morality plays about how drugs and to put it very lightly poor life decisions will lead to your untimely demise. Seemingly in the most graphic way possible. At the end of the Hell house you’ll find not just an exit but a chance to change your life and accept God or Jesus into your heart so you can live in heaven. I really don’t want to get into the intense details of these houses and what they represent but if your interested and have netflix there is a great documentary on the mixing of horror elements and religion.
But out here in Japan in an obscure section of Osaka, there is a year round shrine dedicated to tell you what will happen if you make it on that trip on the highway to hell. When you walk in you are greeted by a sign with an Oni, a Japanese demon, that says what will happen if you are a liar and you go to hell. They rip out your tongue. After this happy entrance, there is a sign that says “don’t take your kids here just to scare them”. So at least there is a warning. The main shrine is supposed to be a representation of what Japanese hell looks like and what you can expect if you find yourself there. Even if you don’t understand Japanese, this is pretty intense. But like a ray of light there is a way out of this eternal nightmare, through Buddha! Do you see a similarity here?
But in all honestly I thought the good version of heaven with the Buddha was more frightening than the hell part.
I was able to actually shot a video here on a very hot hellish summer’s day. It is quite a unique experience. What do you guys think? Is this the Japanese verison of a Hell house? Have you ever been in a hell house? What was it like for you? Leave a comment down below.
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