Tuesday, 2nd December 2008
In Events In Japan,
Driving out the Devil at the Senso-ji Temple
Visitors to Tokyo on January 18th might want to pay a visit to the Senso-ji Temple to witness the annual Moja Okuri (Driving out the Devil) ceremony.
Two torch-bearing demons will be seen darting around the ancient temple during the ceremony which will only last for a matter of minutes.
A cauldron of incense will be lit to drive out the evil spirits, while a lick of flames from the ceremonial fire is believed to guarantee good health throughout the coming year, according to Whatsonwhen.
During the ceremony, which will last no more than five minutes, young priests in attendance will drive the devils out of their minds, prompting the demonic torch-bearers to disperse into the dark, cold January night.
The Senso-ji Temple was completed in 645AD and is believed to be the oldest in Tokyo.
The nearest metro is Asakusa, approx five minutes walk away.
Related news stories:
Viability of Buddhist temples 'in doubt' (3rd September 2008)