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Sanpaku gan (三白眼) or Sanpaku (三白) is a Japanese term that means “three whites” and is generally referred to in English as "Sanpaku eyes".

It refers to the belief held by some that the visibility of the white of the eye between the iris and the lower eyelid is a sign of physical and spiritual imbalance.

People with sanpaku eyes are thus feared to be prone to violent, disordered behaviors. Though this belief is testable, to date, no known scientific evidence validates it.

John Lennon mentioned it in his song Aisumasen (I'm Sorry)[1] from the 1973 Mind Games album. It is also briefly referenced in William Gibson's Neuromancer.

Some societies consider Sanpaku (San Pacu) eyes to denote physical and mental superiority, also beauty. By all accounts it is a very rare and significant physical characteristic, envied and admired by some, but misunderstood, resented, and feared by others. Some representations of certain Gods and Heroes are shown with this characteristic.


  • You Are All Sanpaku, by George Ohsawa (ISBN 0-8065-0728-4)
  • Neuromancer, novel by William Gibson (the main character describes Linda as being "sanpaku")

See also

Macrobiotic diet

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Sanpaku". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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