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: Boris Ivanov 2:5020/496.90 19 98 09:54
: All 19 98 18:18
: py pp

Konnichi-wa, All!
               -== ut of SEPPUKU.TXT ==-
Seppuku - A Practical Guide.
By Nick May
It is hanami time in Japan and readers thoughts turn naturally to ritual
disembowelment. Here in handy cut out form is the Gleaner guide to elegant
self-immolation - please don t call it hari kiri...
Seppuku is highly ritualistic, exquisitely precise and earns you maximum
respect from students and potential job interviewers alike. However, to
avoid excessive pain, thoroughly internalise this fact: seppuku is all
about RITUAL. Often one was not even required to DO anything, merely
reaching for the knife was considered to be the act initiating your
secondis coup-de-grace (the famous "47 ronin" were despatched thus). In
almost all cases death occurred from having the head almost separated from
the body. (Never describe this as beheading, traditionally reserved for
common criminals and quite beneath the dignity of gentlefolk.)
Obviously you have to decide well in advance why you are doing it as
precise etiquette varies. Resistance, remonstrance, show of loyalty,
affirmation of the correctness of one s own position, expiation of a crime
and the wiping out of disgrace are all perfectly good reasons; being
refused a work visa is not (though it might come under funshi, or seppuku
to express great indignation). After all, even in matters of self
disembowelment a man must retain a sense of proportion. We will discuss
"basic" seppuku and leave you to furnish your own flourishes.
Seppuku absolutely requires a minimum of two participants. Waiting to die
from disembowelment is a notoriously drawn out process, very messy and
trying for the spectator. Since the Empo era (late 17th century) only
loonies such as Mishima and characters in Samurai dramas actually waited
for hours to contemplate their entrails by- the-light-of-the-rising-sun -
there is no need for you to indulge in anything so vulgarly melodramatic.
You will require the services therefore of a Kaishakunin, or "second" whois
duty it is to despatch you with a sharp sword at your signal. The exact
moment he strikes is entirely for you to decide - obviously the later and
more painful your death the better your chances with that next visa. For
maximum effect and minimum pain we suggest you fake it. Be sure however
that your second has no higher ideals than you, and of course better nerves
and swordsmanship.
Choosing an appropriate Kaishaku-nin is obviously very important. You
should consider the following. Beheading being very infra dig points are
deducted for actually detaching the head. Make sure your kaishakunin has
practiced and perfected the "daki-kubi" cut so that your head is left
attached to the body by a short flap of skin. This ensures your face is
hidden, demonstrates his prowess with a sword and entirely remove the
stigma of decapitation.
There are three ritual systems indicating when it is appropriate to strike;
choose the one most appropriate to you. Do chat to your kaishaku-nin
beforehand and establish precisely when he is to intervene. DON T rely on a
student, in our experience they make lousy kaishikunin - theyive all seen
far too many samurai movies and read too few history books. They will
almost certainly insist you not only disembowel yourself but write your
name in kanji with your own blood on a silken handkerchief
given-you-by-fair-virgin-lady ("and no, katakana won t do") before carrying
out their ultimate duty. If you are a child, point out that it is customary
to strike at the earliest possible moment. The knife itself, the kozuka,
should be of about 11.5 inches, wrapped in paper with the final inch
exposed. Check it is steel and not a painted bamboo substitute. Youth can
be cruel.
Dress and execution. A loose kimono should be worn. As soon as the Sambo
tray with the knife is placed before you, allow the kimono to fall open,
reach forward, pull the tray toward you, pick up the knife and cut from
left to right. The "jumonji", the crosswise cut, may be omitted by
colonials but gentlemen will know better. The final upward jerk may result
in a "summa cum laude"! Remove the knife, replace it carefully on the Sambo
and signal the Kaishaku-nin to proceed. (You may of course omit all steps
following pulling the tray towards you if you have successfully chosen your
second.)
The last meal. Anise chopsticks should be used to lend a funereal note to
this feast of puns. Three slices of pickle should be served, "mikire" means
both "three slices" and "cut flesh".
In general your friends will try to create an atmosphere of mourning as
though you are already dead. Don t be offended - this consideration is
intended to put you at your ease! Immediately prior to the act you may be
offered a last cup of water (if it is sake it will of course be served with
the left hand poured to the left - don t try this at a party, it s rude).
Your cup will be filled in two pourings, you must drain the contents in two
pairs of two sips. "Three" is taken to imply repetition, two indicating
definitely-not-repetition-no-way! 2 X 2 is 4, or shi, which can be read as
"death". How comforting such intellectual jeux d esprit at this time!
And that is about it. DON T engage in any of the degenerate forms of
seppuku that involve stabbing yourself with a paper fan: they are vulgar
and a paper cut can be quite nasty. DO cover the tatami in your apartment
or your guarantors will have to replace it and definitely DON T chew gum or
ask for a last cigarette. Be considerate of others and try not to make a
lot of noise.
The rules for seppuku are as complex as for the tea ceremony, and the
result roughly the same; if pushed we would have to recommend
self-disembowelment over a slow death from lethal boredom, arthritis and
bitter tea.
"Live briefly but gloriously, One s evanescent life is but a preparation
for death. The fall of the blossom is as moving as its beauty on the limb
and the final moment, as ceremonialized in the ritual of seppuku, is indeed
the moment of truth" (From Jack Seward s "Hara-Kiri" - TUT 1968 - a good
introductory guide.)
               -== End of SEPPUKU.TXT ==-
bi

: Alexey Izmestiev 2:5020/14.82 19 98 10:09
: Khachik Ambarian p 20 98 14:00
: py .2 - p

Hello, Khachik.
18 Jan 98 00:52, Khachik Ambarian wrote to Maxim L. Mazur:
                                           , - H,
                                           .
                             ??? ^^^^^^^
               , p, "otaku".
               , , Naru ^_^
H . p p - "", :
1) y , - y
y.
2) "p" y y p .
p, p y . , p
:)
Yours, Alexey.
... Out of paper on drive D:

: Alexey Izmestiev 2:5020/14.82 19 98 10:34
: Boris Ivanov p 20 98 14:00
: ...

Hello, Boris.
17 Jan 98 13:54, Boris Ivanov wrote to Maxim Krutyko:
                             4) H p p py "p".
               "Cleopatra - Queen of Sex"? p p ,
               (p!) y. ;-)
: y - p , y ;)
Yours, Alexey.
... DOS py ...


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