Tokyo [Japan], January 21 (ANI): Japanese citizens have started thronging various shrines and temples as the Japanese New Year has officially begun.
"Omikuji" are fortune-telling papers that predict the future. "Shicihukujin" are the Seven Lucky Gods of Good Luck.
Witnessing these scenes during the Japanese new year is quite a common sight.
During the month of January in 2023, many people visited the Senso-ji temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, to pay their New Year's visit. Due to the new coronavirus, the number of visitors to Sensoji Temple for "Hatsumode" has reduced.
New Year's visits have been restricted for the last two years. So, this year fewer people paid homage to Hatsumode at Senso-ji Temple.
According to a Security Guard, Hatsumode is the first visit to a shrine or temple in the new year. This is a traditional Japanese New Year's event. People are thankful for the past year and pray for a safe and peaceful year ahead.
"I prayed for good things to happen in this year and for a happy new year! Visitors to Japanese shrines and temples can draw an omikuji. Omikuji are often drawn to predict good or bad luck. Basically, there is a range from great luck to bad luck. At Senso-ji Temple, visitors who have drawn a bad fortune tie it to "Mikujikake" to make a wish that the bad fortune will turn into a good one," said a visitor.
The "Seven Gods of Good Fortune" are enshrined in Japanese temples and shrines. Many shrines and temples open the Seven Lucky Gods to the public only during this time in the New Year.
In particular, it is said that visiting all temples and shrines where the "Seven Lucky Gods " are enshrined during this period will bring great happiness. Therefore, many visitors who come to worship pray to the Seven Lucky Gods.
In Japan, many people have had their jobs affected by the new coronavirus for the past three years.
Many Chinese people come to Hatsumode wearing Japanese kimonos, and Westerners enjoy the scenery at Japanese temples and shrines.
"We also want to experience the culture. And we've been wanting to come for a long time, so we are really excited," a tourist stated.
In a further statement, another visitor said, "I hope something good happens this year will come. Due to the new coronavirus, I never had the opportunity to go to my hometown. I am Chinese and hope to have the opportunity to go to my hometown this year."In Japan, people can now move about freely. Many people can be seen praying for a prosperous new year. (ANI)