In the age-old battle for hearts and minds, both of them were touting eternal life of some description. Or at the very least the potential for it. But despite countless passers-by, no offerings were made, and the offer of a free bible wasn’t pursued.
So all in all an uneventful draw. A result that the men involved presumably deemed a spiritual failure. As an intriguing spectacle, on the other hand, it was a suitably awkward success.
Amusing photo. Did you get lucky or is it common to see conflicting religion pushers in close proximity?
I got lucky with this one. The Buddhist is almost always there. Or at least he is at the weekend. The Christians on the other hand generally only appear around the Christmas/New Year period. That’s when I took the photo.
Is he offering or ‘just collecting’ ?
I had to look twice to make sure it wasn’t a phone he was holding!
Haha, happy to say it’s not a phone!
Collecting. Not sure what the term is, but when people drop a coin in bowl, the priest offers a prayer in return.
Interesting to watch. Not with this particular fella, but seen people making the donation and then bowing deeply during the prayer. Whereas others just drop a coin in and then walk away.
Great moment! The buddhist guy doesn’t look like so happy!
Yes, there’s certainly the hint of a dirty look.
What, no ban on religion and politics 🙂
You certainly have an eye for unusual and interesting scenes.
The difference between the two is that one is offering a passive service to those who already believe and the other is trying to foist their beliefs on others.
Haha, politics is often there below the surface, but rare for religion to make an appearance!
That sums it up absolutely perfectly for me.
Mauro Marques says
Indeed you got lucky haha.
Then again… most of the times a good photo requires some degree of luck ^^
Luck is definitely a key factor, but at the same time you have to make that luck!
Hans ter Horst says
Lovely contrast in how religion is handled between Buddhism and Christianity: one collecting alms for himself, the other being a missionary and trying to convert people. I came across several groups of Christians in Tokyo (Shinjuku, Ikebukuro) during my last visit, a lot of them westerners I have to add.
But Buddhist or Christian, they all get ignored by the Tokyo public 🙂
Cheers. Yes, I thought it said quite a bit.
I see Mormons out and about trying recruit fairly regularly. Always very easy to spot. White fellas in suits with small name badges. Free English classes I believe is their usual mode of operation. Christians like the one above only seem to come out during the Christmas and New Year period.
But like you say, whatever variant of whatever religion they are selling, they almost always get completely ignored!
Great picture of a nice social contrast – in a lot of respects. Amusing that they’re both so alone, and seemingly forlorn in this shot. There’s an interesting similarity in the look of these two. I think it’s kind of funny that there’s furigana on the sign.
The first thing that popped into my head was the financial / return on investment proposition: give up some coin, or get “eternal life” for free. Of course, adhering to a religious ideology – not sure that’s actually “free”, and anyway, I’m sure they’ll get that coin one way or another LOL
Cheers. I was pleased the way it came out and the ideas it hints at. They are very much alone and decidedly forlorn looking, aren’t they? Not exactly great ads for their respective faiths.
Yes, dedinitely nothing for free. And what if that eternal life has to be spent standing with a placard outside trains stations!
LOL imagine the scores of people lining up for that eternity! I suppose it’s better than some, like the eternity of waiting in line at the post office…
Judging by the often huge lines one regularly sees outside popular restaurants, newly opened shops etc., an eternity outside a train station might get quite a few takers in Tokyo!
On NHK this week I saw a guy queried about joining a long queue outside a Tokyo raman shop and he said if he saw a long queue he would phone his next client and say the traffic was awful and that he’d be late, and then joined the queue. So it definitely seems to have appeal in Japan, if not for the actual queueing, for the promise of a heavenly meal afterwards.
In the UK we have a tradition of queueing, but not out of anticipation of anything good, just out of a resigned attitude of polite and courteous solidarity with our fellow sufferers.
The ability, and like you say, willingness to put up with queues here as always amazed me. My impatience means I’m moaning within minutes, let alone tens of minutes; or heaven forbid, even hours…