Restoring faith to Japan’s sad forest

One of Japan’s most beautiful forests also has a sad association with suicide. But Kyochi Watanabe wants to change that.

The vlogger Logan Paul brought the forest into the global public eye when he visited the forest and posted a video showing the body of an apparent suicide victim, forcing YouTube to cut business ties with him.

Playing music loudly at the edge of the forest, Watanabe is a musician who reminds those he meets that it is a shrine to an ancient Japanese water god, and not somewhere to take one’s own life.

He hopes his singing and guitar-playing reminds people that they aren’t alone, and that they have a friend waiting for them if they follow the music.

Support is available if you have been affected by anything you have heard in this video. Talking to other people can be very helpful – whether this is with a family member, friends, a doctor or an organisation like Befrienders Worldwide where you can find links to help and support organisations around the world which may be near to you.

For viewers in the United Kingdom, this link gives details about organisations which offer advice and support in the UK.

Camera: Jiro Kumakura

Producer: Sophia Smith Galer


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