Every year on Jan. 3, Do-oshi is held at Bishamon-do Shrine in Tsukifuse village in Sado.
Local men with loincloth as demons lift a man up in his "yakudoshi" (unlucky year) and move around inside the shrine to shake off his bad luck and pray for the abundant harvest and well-being of the locals.
10 minutes before the ritual starts.
With the bangings of the walls, Do-oshi starts.
This ritual started about 300 years ago in the Edo period to drive off evils from "yakudoshi" men who were 25 or 42 years old.
Seeing is believing!
Quite dynamic but also spiritual, isn't it?
This year, there were only two yakudoshi men in this village. So two more locals volunteered to be lifted up by demons.
Next year, if you'd like your bad luck shaken off by this ritual, come and join them. But please note only men can participate in it.
After the ritual, I was invited to Kiyota-san's home and...
Look at Kiyota-san's face! He was one of the volunteers. His face was covered with ashes smeared by the demons.
In Japanese sacred rituals, people often get dirty to ward off evils.
This is his family and relatives having a feast after the ritual.
I was lucky to be invited to the feast and enjoyed delicious crab rice, sashimi, vegetables, fruits and more!
Next year, he's waiting for you to come and stay at his place.
Please don't miss these small but unique and sacred events held only once a year in Sado.