Daylight savings time (DST) is not as prevalent as you think and it would surprise you to know not all of the US, Asia, Middle East, and S. America use DST. It is precisely because it gets VERY hot during the summer that the Japanese do not like a longer day with the sun out. Frolicking out in the hot summer sun is...
Best answer: Daylight savings time (DST) is not as prevalent as you think and it would surprise you to know not all of the US, Asia, Middle East, and S. America use DST. It is precisely because it gets VERY hot during the summer that the Japanese do not like a longer day with the sun out. Frolicking out in the hot summer sun is not a favorite pastime. But they will do that in the cold weather.
And not only does it get very uncomfortably hot in the summer, there is also an old cultural stigma associated with having a tan. Traditionally, being tanned or having a very dark complexion marks you as a member of the lower class (peasants) because only they did manual labor out in the sun. There was a time not long ago that you would see many Japanese women using parasols to keep the sun off their exposed skin.
As for why DST was discontinued, there are several reasons although not any of them are definitive. When Japan surrendered at the end of WW2, Allied Occupational Forces instituted DST because of the wrecked infrastructure and electrical power along with many other things were in severe shortage. However, DST was instituted without much debate or discussion and it came to be seen as an order and therefore associated with Occupation period after WW2, so when the Occupation ended, the Japanese ended DST within a month. Even today, you find Japanese websites that rants about it with such slogans as "Daylight-savings time is facist..."
The Japanese Ministry of Education also claims that having more daylight would cause school children to stay out too long and neglect their studies. Not sure why this would matter during the summer time.
Sundown to the Japanese also has a psychologist inference that it's time to relax; time to leave work, go out drinking, go have fun, etc. If you people watch in Japan, you can actually see a difference in their body language after sundown - they do seem more relaxed even when walking.
As for traditional Japanese going to shrine early, most Japanese today don't go to shrines except on special occasions. And since those shrines are outdoors and no air condition, it's not a popular thing during the hot summer.
6 days ago