For this week’s blog, I want to introduce the way people celebrate New Year’s in
Let me start off by talking about Hatsumode. Hatsumode, literally translated means a first visit, and is where people visit the shrine for the first time in the new year to pray for good fortune. Some shrines offer amazake, a sweet Japanese sake, and drinking it is said to protect you from the bad luck.
At the temple, priests ring a large bell called joya-no-kane on the night of New Year’s Eve into New Year’s Day. The bell is rung 108 times because it is believed to help release the 108 Bonno, a Buddhist word for negative thoughts or pain that clouds one’s mind.
Although people in
don’t wear kimono on a regular basis, this is one of the few events where many people wear them and celebrate the start of a new year. Japan
Torii (A traditional Japanese Gate) Japanese Shrine
Information on shrines in Hyogo: http://www.hyogo-tourism.jp/english/category/history.html