Monday, 3 February 2020

fuku mame

Literally seasonal division and more properly denoted as Risshun, today marks the festival of Setsubun (節分) the eve of the beginning of Spring in Japan and a signal to perform ritual cleaning of one’s household to drive out the misfortune of the past year and welcome in good luck for the year to come.
Originally associated with the Lunar New Year, its date has now been fixed and the chief ceremony involves the scattering of the titular luck beans called makemaki (豆撒き) where a family member born in the corresponding zodiacal year is charged with roasting soybeans and tossing them out of the threshold of the home (a variation includes another family member discharging the duties of a loitering demon and being pelted with the beans)—shouting “Demons out—luck in!” Like the New Year’s custom of eating black-eyed peas, people will also eat a number of soybeans for each year that they have been alive plus one extra for good luck.