Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

by Fujiko

Quite unique shrine ritual in Sado called "Taasobi shinji".

Can you imagine what this is?  Is it a commedy show?

Actually, this is a sacred shrine ritual held in early February at Kobie Shrine in the precinct of Rengebuji temple in Ogi.

"Taasobi" literally means play in paddy fields.  "Shinji" means shrine ritual.  Combined, this ritual represents the entire process of producing rice from spring when farmers plow paddy fields,  plant rice seedlings, control water and harvest rice in autumn.

But not smoothly?

Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

 

 The ritual starts with shooting arrows at the target.

Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

Then, the main ritual starts and farmers plow paddy fields with hoe in spring.

Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

Suddenly,  crows and  moles appear and attack farmers smearing mixture of black ink and snow!

Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

Farmers go back to work and...

Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

Another attack begins. This time crows and  moles tie a poor farmer to a tree!  How mean they are! 

Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

 These interferences happen several times after each step of growing rice until they harvest it.

A farmer starts leveling the paddy field, I guess... and...

 

 Farmers briefly enjoy snack break called "Oyatsu", eating dried persimmons, one of Sado's special products.

 After an hour long ad-lib ritual,  finally farmers enjoy sake and pray for the rich harvest of the year.

 Simmered vegetables, sweets and hot tea are served to spectators.

Dirty but sacred ritual is coming soon in Sado

The ritual will be held on Feb.6 (Sat.), from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Kobie Shrine in Ogi this year.

Another authentic and sacred "Taasobi shinji" rituals are held at Hakusan Shrine in Hatano and Gosho Shrine in Akadomari.

 Because of this uniqueness, many spectators including many ptotographers come to see this ritual.

I'm happy if some of the readers are interested in this ritual and come to see it next month.   See you there!

 

 Sado my tour

 

 

 


14 Jan 2016


Licensed Guide

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Contact Fujiko

Hello! My name is Fujiko Maeda. I'm a national-licensed tour guide. I was born in Sado Island, off the coast of Niigata Prefecture. I still have little experience as a tour guide but I once worked in tourism industry for about 10 years when I lived in Tokyo. Now I'm a persimmon farmer but when time permits I'm happy to guide you here in Sado. We have a lot to offer like beautiful nature, historical sites, local specialities, traditional performing arts, festivals, islanders smiles and so on.
If you'd like to know real Japanese lifestyle, please visit Sado.
I'm sure you'll be satisfied.
Let's explore Sado with me!
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