Bean-Throwing Event of "Setsubun" Held at Narita Temple

Society

Narita, Chiba Pref., Feb. 3 (Jiji Press)--An annual bean-throwing event was held at Naritasan Shinshoji, a major Buddhist temple in the city of Narita, Chiba Prefecture, east of Tokyo, on Monday, which was this year's "Setsubun," or the day before the start of spring according to Japan's old calendar.

Wearing colorful "kamishimo" traditional clothing and chanting "fuku wa uchi (luck in)" to pray for affluent lives for the people and rich harvests, yokozuna Hakuho and other professional sumo wrestlers, cast members of the "Kirin ga Kuru" ongoing yearlong historical drama series of Japan Broadcasting Corp. (NHK), including lead actor Hiroki Hasegawa, and other celebrities, such as kabuki actor Ichikawa Ebizo XI, threw soybeans and shelled peanuts to a crowd who gathered to see the stars and try to catch the beans.

For the event, 860 kilograms of soybeans and 400 kilograms of shelled peanuts were prepared.

On the day of Setsubun, people traditionally throw soybeans, chanting "oni wa soto (demons out)," as well as fuku wa uchi.

At the annual event at Naritasan Shinshoji, however, bean throwers say only fuku wa uchi, not oni wa soto, because the Fudo Myoo deity at the temple is believed to be able to eliminate the evil of demons.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press