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Tokyo's New Farming Therapy

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Uploaded on May 23, 2009

And in Tokyo, a new kind of stress relief has got city dwellers going back to their roots. City residents are getting down and dirty for needed stress relief and therapy.

The whole point of civilization, development and commerce arguably was to get away from having to do this. But the tyranny of the soil and the weather which so dominated our ancestors' lives, it seems, has been replaced by the tyranny of the profit margin and the promotion - setting up new forms of life pressures. And here in Japan, stressed out businessmen from Tokyo are coming full circle by choosing to go back to their farming roots for a bit of therapeutic toiling of the soil. Everyone here is a city dweller - most with full time jobs in the city - but they are paying good money to learn how to do something that they have spent their lives trying to avoid. Most Japanese youngsters spend their entire childhood studying in a highly competitive education system to bag the opportunity of college and an escape from penury. But now these same people are spending almost 400 U.S. dollars for eight lessons in traditional Japanese farming. [Masami Hasegawa, Former Businesswoman]: "I had felt stressed out at my job as a computer programmer working day-in-day-out in the IT industry. I am hoping this farming may help me enjoy the day moment by moment." Some like Sahoko Kashina, came with their small children who rarely have the opportunity to experience country life. [Sahoko Kashina, Father of Four]: "It feels so good to walk in the mud. It's also educational to my son though I need to keep my eyes on him to stop him fumbling with mud." Now trainers on the course find that some young people want to start life afresh as farmers to escape the rat race they spent all their lives trying to join. The joys of the outdoors and the draw of the land for these people seem to have annihilated the ambitions they and their families held from birth.

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