Hello Minna-San! Today, I am going to talk about a traditional festival in Japan that happened yesterday!
Setsubun, is a annual festival that is celebrated on 3rd February. It is also known as “Bean-Throwing” Festival in English.
On the day of Setsubun, there is a custom of throwing roasted beans around one’s house and at temples and shrines across Japan ! It is believed to ward off evil orges from entering one’s house.
According to Japanese Tradition, if you picked up the thrown beans and eat the same numbers of bean correspond to your age, you will receive good fortunes for the whole year.
Back in the 13th century, people burn dried sardine head because of its strong smell, the smoke of burning wood and the noise of drums to ward off evil spirit.
Burned Dried Sardine Head
There are 2 famous celebrations on Setsubun Festival:
Mamemaki (Bean Throwing)
As the name implies, people will throw soybeans outside the house or at an “Oni” (Demon in Japanese). Sometimes, the father will dress up as a Oni and his children will throw beans at him.
When throwing the beans, one must chant “Oni wa soto! Fuku wa uchi!” (“Devils out, happiness in”)
Ehoumaki (Lucky Direction Roll)
It means “Lucky Direction Roll”. Its a special type of sushi roll that is to be eaten on Setsubun. It is believed that your dream will come true if you can eat the whole sushi roll without saying a word, while facing that year’s lucky direction.
When eating a 恵方巻き (ehoumaki) you must face the lucky direction while eating and concentrate on what you want to accomplish after this spring.