Toward the end of September 2015, my wife and I visited some friends in
Japan along with a quick sight seeing from Tokyo, Kyoto to Kyushu. With the help of the excellent train
network systems, we were able to take quite a few quick views of many cities
and villages from the trains, even with the fast moving Shin-Kan-Sen.
From the view of the station of
, we saw virtually all new buildings
with only one or two old small houses.
And then we remembered what happened to the city seventy years and two
months ago*. On our way back from Kyushu
to Hiroshima Kyoto during another brief stop at the station, we
were quiet and solemn while a silent prayer was in my mind - a
city without the old buildings… Hiroshima
Then I remembered while we had lunch with a Taiwanese retired pastor in a suburban of the city of
just few days before. He told us that he
was somehow upset with some Taiwanese congregations, both in and out of Tokyo , began using
the Mandarin instead the Taiwanese language during the worship services. “Even
the Taiwanese Indigenous congregations keep their
native tongues in their services,” he added. Taiwan
A city without the old houses like
can keep growing because they still
have their memory, culture and tradition.
And the lives, past, present and future, are always treasured. Hiroshima
A people without their mother tongue, Taiwanese in this case, one wonders how far and where they can go.
P.S. While it is good and necessary to obtain Multi-language in today’s civilized world, it is sad to see that we would give up our mother tongue somehow. Language is an important part of our culture that we were born with. If we lose part of our culture, we lose part of ourselves as well.
* On August 6, 1945, during World War II, an American B-29 bomber dropped the world’s first deployed atomic bomb over the Japanese city of Hiroshima(廣島市). The explosion wiped out 90 percent of the city and immediately killed 80,000 people; tens of thousands more would later die of radiation exposure. Three days later, a second B-29 dropped another A-bomb on
, killing an estimated 40,000 people. Nagasaki ’s Emperor Hirohito announced his country’s unconditional surrender in World War II in a radio address on August 15, citing the devastating power of “a new and most cruel bomb.” Japan
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