Kamikakushi

In Japan, when people vanish without without a trace, their disappearances are sometimes blamed on evil yokai. This phenomenon is known as kamikakushi, or spiriting away. The literal translation is 'hidden by the kami' (or gods) and it is this concept that underpins the famous Studio Ghibli film, Spirited Away. In some cases people are never seen again, but some victims do return to the world years later, completely changed by the experience.

Studio Ghibli - Sprited Away
Another strange phenomenon related to kamikakushi is known as oni hitokichi, which translates as 'one bite from an oni.' This is where the victim is believed to be gobbled up by an oni in a single bite, never to return or be seen again. It is said that these mysterious disappearances, and sometimes reappearances, can be the result of someone angering the gods.

'Oni Hitokichi' - Sekien Toriyama

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