Today we are celebrating, not only at Samurai Market as a Company, but throughout Japan, and the reason for that is simply you, dear customer. And we want to thank you for being there for us, allowing us to accompany you in times of plenty, during special celebrations (such as birthdays, anniversaries, Christmas, Halloween...), and also enabling us to bring door-to-door a piece of this beloved land of the Rising Sun to your home during less favorable times (when traveling to Japan wasn't possible due to health reasons). Today is the day when we won't tire of repeating to you: ありがとう, thank you, gracias, danke, merci, grazie, obrigado, dank je, Спасибо, 谢谢, شكراً, धन्यवाद, 감사합니다, Dziękuję!
And it's because today is a national holiday celebrated annually on November 23rd: the well-known Japanese Labor Thanksgiving Day, known as "Kinrō Kansha no Hi" in Japanese. It's a day dedicated to honoring labor and giving thanks for the fruits of one's hard work, and the fruits of Samurai Market, we can see them reflected in you and in your satisfaction with our products.
A quick glance back
As is customary for us, we will begin by taking a brief historical journey of this celebration, from its roots to the present day because the holiday has deep cultural and historical significance in Japan, tracing its origins to ancient harvest festivals and later transformed into a day for commemorating workers.
The real history of Labor Thanksgiving Day in Japan dates back centuries, with its roots in an ancient and significant ceremony known as Niiname-sai, a traditional harvest festival. It's a ritual associated with Shintoism, intended to give thanks to the gods for the harvest. Originally, it was celebrated twice a year: in spring and in autumn. During the Niiname-sai, the emperor offered the first fruits of the harvest to the deity and then partake in consuming those foods as part of the ritual. The practice of giving thanks for the year's labor gradually extended beyond the imperial family to the general population.
However, the modern observance of Labor Thanksgiving Day has its origins in the late 19th and early 20th centuries during Japan's period of rapid industrialization. With the rise of labor movements and the push for workers' rights, the significance of a day dedicated to honoring laborers gained momentum. In 1948, the Japanese government officially designated November 23rd as a national holiday to celebrate labor and production. This holiday was intended to acknowledge the importance of workers and their contributions to the nation's prosperity.
A truly grateful community
Even though Japan in no longer an agrarian society, the Labor Thanksgiving Day’s celebration in Japan typically involves various activities and events across all the country. Even the schools often hold special assemblies or events where students express gratitude to their teachers and other staff members. It is also quite common for students to create drawings or crafts related to Labor Thanksgiving Day and then give them as a gesture of gratitude to the police officers, firefighters, healthcare personnel, and train station employees. This practice is a way to express gratitude and appreciation for the work done in maintaining safety and order in the community. The drawings or gifts often contain messages of thanks and appreciation for the police officers. This tradition also serves to strengthen the bond between the community and law enforcement.
The significant aspect of Labor Thanksgiving Day is the emphasis on gratitude, not just for one's own labor but also for the community and the environment. Some communities engage in volunteer work or environmental activities, such as cleaning parks or planting trees, to express appreciation for nature and society.
Additionally, the day serves as an opportunity for reflection on labor rights and social issues. Labor unions and advocacy groups may organize rallies, seminars, or discussions to address current labor-related challenges and advocate for better working conditions and fair treatment of workers.
Having a job not only represents an income source but also a font of stability and personal growth, and the Japanese deeply value the importance of work both at an individual level and within the social context. On a personal level, they focus on dedication to work, continuous improvement, and a sense of responsibility towards their tasks. This focus translates into a strong work ethic and a commitment to excellence in their professional roles.
At a societal level, Japan has built a society where work is a fundamental pillar. Japanese work culture promotes collaboration, respect for work hierarchy, and a strong sense of belonging to the company or workgroup. Moreover, contributing to the collective welfare is highly valued, both in terms of economic production and social stability. The Japanese appreciate the balance between work and personal life but also understand the significance of work in the country's social and economic structure. This appreciation of the importance of work at both individual and social levels has contributed to Japan's reputation as a nation with a highly committed and efficient workforce.
It is for this reason that, as the years go by, gratitude as a reminder of the importance of acknowledging the efforts of workers in building and sustaining society continues to be upheld and passed on to each new generation in Japan, and with this, we wish to conclude our message for today: THANK YOU, DEAR CUSTOMERS AND FRIENDS, THANK YOU!