3

In English the word 'Sanctuary' can refer to ether a place of safety or a religious building, as in Europe the two have traditionally been one of the same, as during the crusades for example, many saintly bishops housed Jew's on their grounds to protect them from being prosecuted by their own christian brothers.

This being said, let's say in a super religious city, atheists are abused for their faithlessness. As a result of this someone opens a building that's meant to act as a sanctuary for this minority, and cleverly names the building in Japanese as to allow it to hide in the open.

This super unneeded setup aside, you could start this name as 「無神論者の?」、but what word would you use for the ?, as a sanctuary in this context is that it's a safe-place, but is definitively non-religious, and thus needs a neutral term.

So ya, rambling aside, what word would you use to describe a properly non-religious safe-place? As all I've managed to find are religious terms.

  • 1
    駆け込み寺 can be taken into account too. – user4092 Nov 30 '16 at 16:08
  • 1
    "Sanctuary" itself comes from "sacred place". If you think this is neutral, I guess 聖域 would be a good option. – broccoli forest Dec 1 '16 at 10:03
3

what word would you use to describe a properly non-religious safe-place

Maybe these might work:

  • 隠れ家
  • 避難所

Or maybe phrases that are more descriptively literal:

  • 安全なスペース
  • 安らぎの場所

But...

and cleverly names the building in Japanese as to allow it to hide in the open

Describing and naming aren't the same so...

I guess we shouldn't start with such a non-hidden term like 無神論者の~ as you suggested. If the society persecutes atheists then it hardly makes sense to have words directly describing atheists in the name.

Also, hiding while using 隠れ and 避 as part of the name, isn't really hiding.

I suppose you could name it anything if the intent is to be hidden and not overt or advertised. Like how speakeasies during the prohibition era wouldn't have their signboard on the outside naming themselves something like "sanctuary for alcohol".

Then it depends on whether the place is a publicly recognised safe-house or if it's a clandestine one. If it's a secret, then I suppose the answer to your question is now quite subjective and you get to choose a codeword of your choice.

  • +1 for 避難所 (filler). – istrasci Nov 30 '16 at 15:58

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.