Things are Hotting up at Toba no Himatsuri Fire Festival

Aichi sees a fair number of harvest festivals around the start of the Chinese New Year, with communities praying that their crops in the coming year will be bountiful and generous. However, very few of them are quite as, without wanting to seem disrespectful, terrifyingly crazy as The Toba no Himatsuri, also know as Toba Dai-kagaribi, or The Great Bonfire of Toba. What is Toba no Himatsuri? The Toba no Himatsuri, held in Toba in the Aichi city of Nishio, has a history spanning back some 1,200 years, and has in that time been used to predict the year’s harvest as well as the predominant weather for the coming year. Preparations for the festival, traditionally held on the seventh day of the Chinese Year’s first month (though now on the second Sunday of every February), begin the day before, when locals build two giant torches of sun-dried kaya grass and sixty rods of fresh bamboo that stand some five meters high and weigh approximately two tonnes. Around these torches, called ‘suzumi’, are wrapped twelve ropes to symbolize the months, and inside is placed ‘shingi’ holy trees, before the two suzumi are placed in the center of Toba Shinmeisha shrine. What happens at Toba no Hi Matsuri? On the day of its festival itself, two teams of local men are formed, with those coming from the east area of the Toba River being called ‘Kanchi’ and from the west, ‘Fukuchi’. Amongst each team is one 25 year-old man who is designated the shin-otoko (god…
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Things are Hotting up at Toba no Himatsuri Fire Festival
Original Source: www.JapanInfoSwap.com
Things are Hotting up at Toba no Himatsuri Fire Festival

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