The Elixir of Life

The Elixir of Life

The Elixir of Life is a Japanese Folktale centered around an Emperor of China, who heard that Mount Fuji came into being in one night. From this he instantly believed that Mount Fuji must contain the Elixir of Life. And so he set sail to Japan with a number of handsome youths and maidens for Japan.

They sailed through storms which luckily eventually abated and before them they could see the rising slopes of Fuji. They ascended the mountain, near it summit the Emperor running ahead, wanting to be the first one to take a sip of the fabled drink so that he may never grow old.

But later, once his companions caught up with him they only found his body lying on its back with a smile upon his face. He had found his Life Eternal, but would carry it out in the land of the dead.1


1. Davis, F. H. (1992) “Myths and Legends of Japan.” New York: Dover Publications, Inc.

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The Elixir of Life