I have to admit that I love Animé. Often referred to as Jap-Animé to specify the animated movies, series, and graphic novels that come from Japan, the genre has gained popularity far beyond the shores of Japan. While reading about Christianity in Japan, I thought it would be interesting to look into some Japanese iconography. So Jap-anima sounded like a worthy pun for a blog about Japanese religious art.
Anima is a Latin word that would be understood as the soul or spirit, that unseen part of man that makes us alive. It is also the root for the word animation and thus Animé.
One of the more popular icons found in Christianity is the Madonna and Child. Latin, Greek, Russian, Polish… there are a great many variations. It wasn’t a surprise that one of the first I came across from Japan was a Madonna and Child. This one is in a setting of the season of summer, and is part of a collection in different seasons.