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Minatogawa Jinja - Chart detailing "years of misfortune" (yakudoshi)

Abstract

Near a counter that sells protective amulets (o-mamori), this chart details the various ages at which men and women are thought most susceptible to misfortune in their lives. Some explanations of the reasoning behind the system rely on the pronunciation of the digits of the age: 4 (shi) and 2 (ni) sounds "shini" or death for a forty-two year old male and so deserves special care; 3 (san) 3 (san) can be read as "multiple disasters," so that a woman of thirty-three had better watch out. Other explanations suggest a more natural understanding in Japanese culture of specific periods in life when many men or women might traditionally be under a lot of biological or social stress. For one not well-versed in the traditional system, the chart is a reminder of when it might be a good time to stock up on protective charms from the shrine or, for extra caution, even to commission a shrine priest to perform a purification ritual.

Note

Materials may be used for educational, non-commercial purposes only. Acknowledgment to be given to the IDEAS image database and the photographer. Photographer retains copyright.

Administrative Notes

Materials may be used for educational, non-commercial purposes only. Acknowledgment to be given to the IDEAS image database and the photographer. Photographer retains copyright.

Copyright
Copyright restrictions apply.
Publisher
Colorado College
PID
coccc:22021
Extent
640 w x 480 h, 72 ppi