Israeli officials publicly acknowledge the mysterious similarities between Judaism and Japan. Recently, in March of 2007, Rabbi Avichail of the Israeli Investigative Body Amishav, which searches for descendants of the Lost Tribes, arrived in Japan. Although they only stayed for a short amount of time, the investigative body concluded that "There is no doubt that there is some kind of strong connection between Judaism and Japan. More research is needed to determine the details."
The connections are very interesting.
For example, the Japanese Shintoist Holy day is the Yamaboko Junko, or "Going atop the Mountain to lay to rest the Shrine". The day Noah's Ark rested atop Mount Ararat lies on the same day. The word "Essa", which is a carrying chant chanted by the holders of the Omikoshi, or portable shrine, is a word which really has no meaning in Japanese but means "Carry" in Hebrew.
One of Japan's largest festivals, the Gion Festival, is believed by many, including the Gion Festival officials, to be the same as Ancient Israel's Zion Festival. The month long festival is almost identical in each event, date, etc. The artwork depicted on the portable shrines in the festival are from ancient Japan, but are renderings of landscapes in the middle east - camels walking the desert, pyramids, Baghdad Palaces, and most surprising is a grand picture of Rebecca offering water to Isaac which is confirmed to be a rendition of Genesis 24 in the Old Testament.
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These are only some of the mysterious connections...