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Calendar of annual rituals


Setsubun-sai (Day before the First of Spring) 節分祭
Setsubun-sai (Day before the First of Spring) 節分祭


Originally, Setsubun meant the changing of the seasons in general, but today, the day of Setsubun means the eve of Risshun (the first day of spring). In old Japan, people thought the division between winter and spring was the most important because it was also the division of the old year and the New Year.
On this day, two special ceremonies called Meigen (鳴弦, resounding bowstrings) and Mamemaki   ( 豆撒き   , scattering beans) are held after the ritual. In the Meigen ceremony, priests pluck their bow strings in the Lower Worship Hall and attendants scatter soybeans. These two ceremonies are held to dispel evil spirits, and  expresses the wish to avert bad incidents in the New Year.
According to these traditional customs, apotropaic rituals(to expel evil spirits) are held at Tsurugaoka Hachimangu during the weekend just before the Setsubun day.

Kigen-sai (National Foundation Day) 紀元祭
The first day of the horse
Hatsuuma-sai (First Day of the Horse at Maruyama Inari) 丸山稲荷社初午祭
Kinen-sai (Spring Harvest Festival) 祈年祭
Tencho-sai (Emperor's Birthday) 天長祭
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