Japan Australia Pages

Friday, February 3, 2012

Setsubun

Image by siren7
Today, February 3rd is Setsubun no hi (節分の日) which marks the start of the spring season risshun(立春) in Japan. The word Setsubun literally means a division of the seasons. Setsubun no hi is not an official national holiday, but it is celebrated in ways meant to drive away evil spirits and bad luck and bring in good luck.


It is custom on Setsubun no hi for people of all ages to throw beans and shout “oni wa soto fuku wa uchi”, which basically means Out with the demons and in with good luck! It is traditionally believed that the throwing of beans and shouting would drive away the demons of misfortune and thus allow prosperity. Children will often wear masks representing these bad luck demons.


Another tradition is to eat the number of beans corresponding to your age.

Another way to celebrate is by eating a big, long, fat, uncut sushi roll called ehou-maki.

10 comments:

  1. Great explaination! There are all kinds of local traditions with this day, definitely a fun one.

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  2. I won't be able to go to a setsubun event, unfortunately, but I saw some eho-maki in my local konbini. It made me smile. ^^

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  3. Thanks Benjamin, I love all the local traditions that make this day so fun. We always visit our local temple to throw our beans :)

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  4. Thanks Rurousha, Maybe next time! Those uncut eho-maki are so cool aren't they :)

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  5. I just ate 36 beans. I'm so full. :)

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  6. Throwing beans sounds fun! :)

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  7. What interesting traditions! The ehou-maki looks so good!

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  8. Thanks Coco, Great hint! I guess I can work out your age now :)

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  9. Thanks Lina, It is a lot of fun and a great Japanese traditon :)

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  10. Thanks Amber, That's one reason I love Japan - the cool traditions. The ehou-maki is good but a real mouth full :)

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