The movie “The Forest” is a horror story about a woman whose sister was seen walking into the Aokigahara Forest, nicknamed “Sea of Trees.” Authorities believe that her sister is dead since many people that enter the forest never come back out. “The Forest” is fictional, however, Aokigahara is real. It sits at the base of Mt. Fuji in Japan and is the second most popular suicide site in the world, second only to the Golden Gate Bridge. According to fusion.net, three types of people enter the forest; hikers, those who are curious and those planning to take their own life. Signs line the trails reading “Your life is a precious gift from your parents. Think about them and the rest of your family,” with the suicide hotline written below. This tradition of suicide began when a Buddhist monks wandered into the forest to purify themselves by starvation. Later, in the 19th Century Aokigahara earned the reputation of being haunted when the elderly were brought to the forest and left to die, a custom called ubasute. Their souls are believed to haunt the forest along with bird-like demons, called tengu. Today, there 70 corpses are found per year by volunteers who clean up the forest. Authorities do their own corpse collecting and many bodies are left unfound. Exact suicide numbers are kept from the public to keep the forest from gaining popularity. The suicide numbers escalated when Seicho Matsmoto wrote “Tower of Waves” in the 1960s. The book tells the story of a couple killing themselves in Aokigahara, which is later described as the perfect place to commit suicide in another book called “The Complete Manuel of Suicide” by Wataru Tsumumi. “The Japanese do not feel that suicide is something bad, and it becomes apart of accepted behaviour,” said psychiatrist and author, Masao Miyamoto. Suicide is often seen as an escape from financial issues, and because of the high standards in Japan, 25,000 Japanese committed suicide in 2014. Throughout the forest, certain items can be found such as clothing and shoes that line the trails, abandoned campsites, and ropes that are used us trail markers. If you follow the ropes, there will be something at the end, often a corpse, so that a person who has killed themself is easier to find, although many people commit suicide there with the hope of not being found. The employees that work at the shopping center near the front entrance of the forest say that those planning to kill themselves are easy to spot and they always try to talk them out of it. “They wander around for a while before starting down the trail and are careful not to make eye contact with anyone,” said Kazuaki Amano, an employee. Workers from the local morgue must deal with the bodies. They have to spend the night with the corpses, as it is bad luck to leave the corpse of a suicide victim alone. It is believed that when they corpse is alone, its’ spirit will scream and its’ body will move.