國學院大學
國學院大學デジタルミュージアム

Encyclopedia of Shinto

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カテゴリー1 5. Rites and Festivals
カテゴリー2 Individual Shrine Observances
Title
Text A festival celebrated at Hikawa Jinja in Ōmiya City, Saitama  Prefecture, on December 10. During the night, a bonfire is lit on the shrine precincts (keidai). It is believed that touching the flame has evil repelling efficacy, and therefore the festival was called Ohisai (the Fire Festival) in the past. As the approach to the shrine is densely lined with street stalls, which attract crowds of people, the festival is also known as Tōkamachi (ten-day market) or the Daikokuichi (Daikoku market). From November 30 to December 9, a ritual known as zensai (pre-purification) starts at ten o'clock in the evening. After this ten-day period is over, another ritual is conducted at three in the afternoon of the tenth. The ritual features offerings (shinsen) of rice, sacred wine, hyakutorizen ("One Hundred Offering Trays"), diamond shaped rice cakes, Chinese yams, shrimp, small carp on skewers, etc. Offerings placed on the hyakutorizen include eight types of fresh and seawater foods as well as eight types of edible wild plants. The gosai (post-purification) ritual is held on December 11. After worshipping at sessha (auxiliary shrines) and massha (branch shrines), a naorai is held according to ancient custom at the kaguraden. This ritual is known as "fukugei shinji" and consists primarily of prayers for good luck during the coming year.
— Mogi Sakae
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