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Tōrō nagashi (灯籠流し Tōrō = lantern / nagashi = cruise, flow) is a Japanese ceremony in which participants float paper lanterns down a river. This is primarily done on the last evening of the Bon Festival, festival based on the belief that this guides the spirits of the departed back to the other world. The white lanterns are for those who have died in the past year. Traditional Japanese beliefs state that humans come from water, so the lanterns represent their bodies returning to water.

(Source: sucricedicius)

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