silent sea2

Kagoshima Prefecture is located at the southernmost tip of the island of Kyushu, Japan. Among other things, it is famous for its sweet potatoes, Shirokuma shaved-ice dessert, and Sakurajima, one of the world’s most active volcanoes.

Another popular attraction is the Kagoshima aquarium Io World. The aquarium features much of the prefecture’s own marine life, and even has a giant tank which holds a giant whale shark.

One tank in particular, however, is leaving some visitors with an eerie, chilling feeling. As one Japanese Twitter user recalls of the exhibit pictured above, seeing it as a child left her with goosebumps and still haunts her to this day.

What’s in that tank that could make people feel this way? Absolutely nothing.

Twitter user @trogiar recently posted a few photos from a visit to the Kagoshima aquarium, writing: “At the Kagoshima aquarium, there’s a tank called “The Silent Sea”, filled with nothing but water. As a child, seeing it gave me a very ominous feeling, and even now it still haunts me.”

Peering into the glass, one can see that there really is nothing in there to be seen, aside from the quiet blue depths of the water and the occasional bubble that rises to the surface. But why on earth would an aquarium have a tank and put nothing in it besides water? Reading the plaque on the wall next to the tank makes its purpose very clear. Written in both Japanese and English, the message reads:

“Blue sea, nothing is there.
It was once filled with the sound of living things
so loud that I even wanted to cover my ears.
But now, there is only the blue sea
and I can hear nothing any more.

Creatures called human beings
only consider about themselves.
While as the days pass by
the songs of the living things die away
one after another, and are gone,
so now I can hear nothing any more,
there is only the silent blue sea.

What can we do now
so as not to leave a silent sea
behind for our children?”

A spokesperson for the aquarium stated that the tank was left that way since the aquarium first opened in 1997. “After seeing all the lively marine life from the Kyushu Islands and Kagoshima Bay, we wanted visitors to see this lonely, empty tank and think ‘What would the ocean be like without any life?'”

It is indeed a very strong message that has gotten people thinking.

Source: The Huffington Post Japan
Featured image: Twitter @trogiar