Meditating Under a Waterfall
Truth in Television: It's a well-known Asian ascetic practice (known in Shinto as misogi), at least for those ascetics who live around waterfalls. Compare Watching the Sunset.
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Anime & Manga
- The kendo captain in Mai-HiME does the entire "sitting under waterfall" thing to "cleanse his spirit of lustful thoughts".
- Subverted, lampshaded and used straight in Samurai Champloo. Mugen is doing a Training Montage before facing a fearsome swordsman, and towards the end, he approaches the waterfall, commenting, "Meditating under a waterfall..."; then, after staring at it for a few seconds, he just goes "Screw that" and walks away.
- Later, however, while Mugen is in the fight, the Buddhist priest (who was once a swordsman, and who trained the guy Mugen is fighting, before he fell to a darker path), is seen meditating under that same waterfall, running his Prayer Beads as he prays for Mugen's victory.
- Kyohei from Yamato Nadeshiko Shichihenge tried it once when he suspected he was in love with Sunako. As it turned out, he got distracted by his hunger and ended up craving fried prawn.
- Parodied in One Piece when Luffy and Usopp stand under a bath's fountain to mimic this. Zoro is also seen doing it in a filler episode.
- Ash and Pikachu are shown doing this in the seventh opening for the Pokémon anime.
- Ryoma in the Power Stone anime. While telling his fortune, Rouge assumes this means he has a fascination with laundry.
- Love Hina:
- Happens in Inuyasha, when Miroku visits the family shrine after his curse is wounded and threatens his life.
- Nabeshin, Pedro, and Pedro's son from Excel Saga do this during their Training Montage before they set out to rescue Pedro's wife from That Man.
- Parodied in Happy Mania - Shigeta is pictured meditating under a waterfall... about men as usual.
- The second ending sequence in Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo has Soften and Heppokomaru doing this, but Heppokomaru can't manage it.
- Fala does this in an episode of GoLion.
- From Lupin III', we have the ever-training Goemon Ishikawa XIII. He meditates in waterfalls, as well as cloudy mountain peaks, hot springs, and secluded canyons. Sometimes he does more than one at the same time!
- One chapter of Sgt. Frog opens with Koyuki and Dororo leaving to do this. The meditation causes Dororo to Flashback briefly to a revealing conversation with his teacher, Jirara.
- Seiji Date from Ronin Warriors does this twice—and his hair doesn't move an inch. There would have been a 3rd, but meditating in a cave behind the waterfall doesn't count.
- Hanaukyō Maid Tai episode 14. Konoe Tsurugi and Taro do this while she's training him.
- On Steel Angel Kurumi both Nakahito and his brother do this.
- Tenchi does this in one chapter of the Tenchi Muyo! manga.
- During his training to become a Bronze Saint, Saint Seiya's Shiryu didn't just meditate under the waterfall —he learned to kick it hard enough to reverse the water's flow.
- In the first season of Saint Seiya Omega, Shiryu, after losing all his senses, spent all of his time meditating under the waterfall, while training his son Ryuhou through Cosmo. Ryuhou himself is briefly shown doing it at the end of the second season's third episode.
- Despite not really happening, Tohru Honda from Fruits Basket thought that it was part of Kyo's Training from Hell that happened before the series start.
- In an episode of Sailor Moon S, Makoto goes to train in a Buddhist temple led by a famous Bare-Fisted Monk named Kakuzuin. At some point she catches him training like this and attempts to imitate him, but she can barely withstand few seconds under the icy water. Then Kakuzuin gets out... and sneezes, as he only managed to do it due to being very focused.
- Sanae tries this so she can change her behavior and eventually be around Ika without trying to glomp her and such, and not be knocked away.
- In Ultimate Muscle, a competitor for the Chojin Crown does this, but is reported to have been knocked out by a lump of driftwood midway through.
- In Heaven's Lost Property, Tomoki and Astraea attempt to do this, but eventually Astraea says the water is too cold and passes out.
- In the Touhou manga, Wild and Horned Hermit, poor Reimu is forced to meditate under a waterfall by Kasen as part of her training to become a more disciplined Miko.
- In Vagabond, chapter 52, Musashi attempts to meditate to remove the fear of dying to someone he lost to. The instructor lampshades that ancient people have done it to remove their fears, but then subverts it when stating it won't do any good. Musashi almost drowns as a result.
"By the time you rise out of the falls...you shall become fully aware...that it's not going to do any good."
- In Best of the Best, the South Korean Taekwondo team is shown standing under a waterfall during their training.
- In the Discworld novel Soul Music when Glod and Cliff have Buddy's harp fixed, they tell the cunning artificer that the harp is of such quality that the original maker spent a week under a waterfall in a buffalo hide meditating before even pickup up his tools. The artificer replies that for what they're paying him he'll have a quick sit in the shower wearing a shammy leather.
Live Action TV
- Anthony Bourdain did this in an episode of No Reservations. The behind the scenes episode showed that it was a really awkward shot.
- Done in Kamen Rider Den-O by K-Ryotaro - which, given Kintaros' predisposition towards martial arts, should come off as no surprise.
- This was part of a detour challenge in The Amazing Race: Unfinished Business(Season 18).
- Ryunosuke spontaneously does this under a fountain at the end of the second episode of Samurai Sentai Shinkenger, with all the Large Ham he's famous for.
- Yu-Gi-Oh!: Mizuho in the artwork of "Asceticism of the Six Samurai". She's training to become the Hand of the Six Samurai after mourning for Shinai's death.
- In Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver Versions, the Cianwood Gym Leader, Chuck, meditates under an artificial waterfall in his Gym. In fact, he's so deep in meditation that you can't rouse him to have a battle, despite him being the first trainer you see in the Gym. You have to battle through the Gym to reach the shutoff valve for the waterfall to snap him out of his meditation.
- Maya Fey in Ace Attorney at one point sought a waterfall for her spirit-medium training. There are no nearby waterfalls, however, so she is forced to do it in the shower. Unfortunately, Phoenix didn't pay the water bill for his office. The basis of the plot of the last case of the third installment is Maya, Pearl and Phoenix heading to a temple so that Maya can undergo an especially cold variation. It got worse in the manga, where Marvin Grossberg suggested they drain a water tower and ended up flooding the city. Yeah, he got sued for it.
- In Monster Rancher 2, one of the versions of "Meditate" is this.
- In Ippatsuman's ending in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars, he realizes how strong the various street fighters are without armor or mecha, and strives to improve himself so he doesn't have to rely on them. Cut to him meditating under a waterfall as Polymar, Viewtiful Joe and Tekkaman wonder if they should be doing the same thing.
- In Shiren the Wanderer, Pekeji claims to have done this when he has reached his maximum potential.
- The end of the Friendly Local Chinatown section boss in MadWorld is found Meditating Under a Waterfall, the Announcer Chatter inform us it's the first time in ages he's had a shower..
- In Earthbound, Ness has to meditate under a waterfall for three real-world minutes in order to open up the secret passage to the game's next dungeon.
- Asura before the final battle with Chakravitran in Asura's Wrath.
- In Fatal Fury Special, Andy takes one of these in his ending.
- Mai tells NESTS!Kyo to invoke the trope in The King of Fighters XIII.
- During Taketo's route of Class Trip Crush, an incident during the group's visit to a temple in Kyoto results in the guys being made to sit under a waterfall and reflect upon themselves. The protagonist feels bad about it since she was partly responsible, but Taketo and Yasuto, the jocks of the group, seem to enjoy it.
- Samurai Jack does it, before engaging possessed blind demon archers (he's trying to discern how he can effectively avoid the archers, because anytime he moves, he will be heard and shot at).
- In the Steven Universe episode "Garnet's Universe", Garnet, Hopper, and Hoppy do this as part of a Training Montage. Ringo, on the other hand, takes a Waterfall Shower.