The Aokigahara is considered to be haunted by
demons in Japanese mythology.
And given its history, it is not wonder why.
Although the forest itself is not very big (around 35 square
kilometers or 14 square miles), because of its high density of trees and dark
areas (the sun doesn’t penetrate deeply inside the forest), many people get
Legend says that those who are engaged in this sea forest
never return. But there is some truth in that, as even in these days, many
hikers lose their way.
Actually the problem of getting lost in the forest is so big, that hikers carry plastic tapes to
mark their paths and to be able to return.
Because the landscape is so similar, the brain is distorted and it is difficult to keep
direction at any time.
In the Japanese popular belief, if a person dies in a deep sense of hatred, anger, sadness, or
desire for revenge, their soul can’t leave this world and continues to wander, appearing to people affected by the
spell or those who cross his path . These souls are called yurei and they can are found in many modern cultural
references such as movies as well. Unlike western horror movies, where the ghost wants something specific in order
to be able to rest in peace, the yurei wants nothing in particular; they just want to have their curse removed or
According to some Japanese spiritualists, the trees themselves soaked in themselves a malevolent
energy accumulated over centuries.
Moreover, even without believing, trees give the impression of being alive , they have grown on
an incredibly fertile land and thus have roots in all shapes, resembling sometimes tentacles, and sometimes they
give you the impression they can walk (photo of such an illusion on the right)
When the forest guardians find a dead body, they will take it to a special room designed for
dead bodies that can be found next to the forest. Here, the body will be placed on a bed. What is more interesting
though, is that a guard will sleep in the same room with the body.
This may seem surprising, but it is said that if the corpse is left alone in the room, its yurei
will move all night in the dormitories screaming and being deranged.
The guards will play rock-paper-scissors (janken in Japanese) to decide who will be the unlucky
one to sleep during the night next to the body. This just shows how much they believe in and how they are afraid of
fallen souls - they prefer to sleep near the body, rather than taking the risk to disturb a yurei.