1 month ago
This post has been split into two parts! (Part 1/2)
Learning to Feel Japan # 15 ( @sumangalibhaduri )
Japan is an amazing country and studying about Japanese culture can be extremely intellectually rewarding and also interesting at the same time as it is full of pleasant surprises! I came upon one such curious instance in the form of their Shichi Fuku Jin or The Seven Gods of Fortune. They are an unlikely ensemble of Japanese, Chinese and Indian gods and goddesses! More interestingly, one of them is not even a god, but a historical figure!
The Seven Gods of Fortune started being mentioned as a group, in the year 1420. It is commonly believed that Tenkai, a Buddhist priest, selected these gods with the consent of Iemitsu Tokugawa, the Shogun whom he served. The gods were selected on the basis of whoever possessed the perfect virtue of longevity, fortune, popularity, sincerity, kindness, dignity and magnanimity. Kano Yasunobu, a prominent artist of that time, was commissioned to portray these gods for the very first time.
The concept of Takarabune:
The idols of Shichi Fuku Jin are displayed in various formats. In some places, their individual statues are set side by side in a row, whereas in many places we see them portrayed together in a close-knit group. But what happens if The Seven move together?! For this they use the Takarabune. Takarabune is a boat in full sail, stacked with loads of rice bushes and treasures. This is a common and popular image in Japanese paintings.
Although the origin of treasure-boat paintings is not clear, one record mentions that they were started in the Muromachi period (1338 AD –1573 AD). According to another source, they were originally imperial gifts to high-ranking courtiers in celebration of the New Year. In the Edo Period (1603 AD –1867 AD), it was a popular custom among common people to place Takarabune pictures under one's pillow on the 2nd night of the New Year to induce auspicious dreams and resulting good fortune. If anyone had a bad dream, it was common to set the painting adrift in the river or sea to prevent bad luck.
#japan #culture #tbt #throwbackthursdays #india #インド #日本 #七福神 #ザジャパンカレー #thejapancurry