In honor of Fête des lumières.
For sister moe, this type of sister is usually a Catholic nun. But also denotes ane (姉 big sister) and imouto (妹 little sister) as sis-con. Haru-nee of Makenki, Mao of Kimikiss, Haruka of Amagami, and Nene of Love Plus come to my mind as ane moe. But actually sister can be more imouto. Why? Etymologically speaking, imouto came from imo (妹 a girl with supernatural ability). The same kanji with imouto. And imo meant not only familial sister but also all girls that you were intimate with. Girlfriend, yome (bride, wife), sefure (sex friend), comrade, friend. But, imo has become imouto since its Chinese word represents “little sister.”
So, imo was more like an English word “sister” since it didn’t denote older or younger. And it could be sisterhood in Christ too. For sister in Christ, we Japanese speakers usually call shimai. For example, if Horie Yui is a Christian fellow, then we call her “Horie Shimai (Sister Horie).” Ahh, sounds very Christian! Marimite soeur system! Ah, the sound of shimai is very holy. It’s holiness that invokes moe. Yes, just like today’s shimai, imo was the archetype of the holy woman, e.g., female shaman.
In Okinawa, imouto is revered as a guardian angel. In their spiritual world, only little sister (onari) and big brother (ekeri) exist. And, that is the most sacred union. Hansel and Gretel. In Japanese, kyodai (兄妹). So for Okinawans, Tora and Sakura are the best union. A younger sister taking care of her NEET older brother. Yes, petites-soeurs of Marimite are the most divine! Hence, the ultimate imouto love is obento. “Onii-chan, I made obento for you!”
But sister (nun) is also pretty moetic. In Shintoism, miko plays the sister role. I bet monk is pretty moetic to some female otaku. While I was googling Hatsune Miku’s onion which led me to Grushenka’s onion of The Brothers Karamazov, I figured if Grushenka lived today, she would’ve definitely become a dating sim otaku. Yes, she wants to conquer (koryaku 攻略) Alyosha, a young ikemen Christian monk. Monk is the one totally renounced sex, which is also Parajika (the gravest offense) in the Buddhist monastic code. So, he’s not datable at all.
But irony is that prohibition makes sex so irresistible. When you see a monk or nun, you can instantly tell that their costumes symbolize abstinence. The Jonas Brothers’ purity rings. The one with saintlike quality induces the strongest sexual thoughts. Caligula effect. Grushenka even pays her cousin to bring Alyosha to her apartment. “I really want to disrobe him.”
How should we call this type of moe? But there’s no certain word for monk moe. “Brother moe”? Or otouto (little brother) moe? While nun moe is sister moe. But the word “sister” is so broad and inclusive. So, it’s good to leave “sister” instead of “imouto.” Imouto limits and specifies what type of moe you have. So I rather say I have sister moe instead of imouto moe.
Thus, sister moe prevails!