I went to get rid of bad luck!

Traditional Crafts

I went to a shrine for Yakubarai. Yakubarai is a ritual to get rid of bad luck.
I go to Wakahachimangu shrine to get purified every year after I became freelancer.

Wakahachimangu shrine is at Hakata and the shrine is famous for Yakubarai. People calls the shrine “Yakuhachiman” or “Yakuyokehachiman”. It is because “Yaku” means unluckiness and “Yakuyoke” means getting rid of bad luck.

The purification ritual usually held from new year to Lunar New Year. I went to the shrine weekday afternoon, so there were not many people. It might take quite a time if you go there on weekend, so you should give yourself plenty of time.

At the reception, there are white papers to fill out our name, address, and the age indicated in Kazoedoshi. Kazoedoshi is a traditional Japanese manner of reckoning age. Newborns are considered a year old when they are born, and also add one year to their age at the new year.

Turned in the paper with Hatsuhoryou (ritualy fee) at the reception. (Need to put Hatsuhoryou into a white envelope.) I just needed to wait until my name is called. A waiting room was empty at first, so I sat there and relaxed. I waited like 30 mins. The waiting room was full of people in the end.

When it was our turn, they beckoned us to come out of the waiting room. Then lead us to the ritual room by calling each one of our names. There were about 30 chairs in the room. My name was called earlier so I could sit on the chair during purification. Maybe about 20 people were standing. The ritual took about 40 mins this year. I felt bit longer than usual. After coming out of the room, I got an amulet and charms.

It was cold but felt like I’ve done one work.
My 2019 is going to be a great year!!

Wakahachimangu shrine:
Hakata Ekimae 1 Chome-29-47, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, Fukuoka Prefecture 812-0011

At Wakahachimangu shrine, there is no fee stated other than specific ritual dates. However, standard price is 3,000yen to 5,000yen. The amount you pay doesn’t really matter, it is just charms you get after the ritual is different.

What is Yakubarai?
It is the ritual at shrines or temples to get rid of the Yaku(bad luck) accumulated from everyday life.

What is Yakudoshi?
Yakudoshi is a set of unlucky ages in Japan and traditionally believed.
The age of Yakudoshi is counted by Kazoedoshi.

Ages of Yakudoshi:
Men: The ages of 25, 42, and 61
Women: The ages of 19, 33, 37, and 61

Especially the age of 42 for men and the age of 33 for women are known as Daiyakudoshi which are their unluckiest age.
The year before Yakudoshi called Maeyaku (前厄) and the year after called Atoyaku (後厄) are also considered as unlucky ages.

Why those ages?
There is no scientific proof or anything. However, it is said significant life-stages or body changes can happen these ages, and those events may affect their health.