第1番 【立春】

No. 1 [First day of spring]

24 solar terms 1st

First day of spring

The arrival of spring.

It's the beginning of the season.

The first day of spring is the first of the 24 solar terms .

Although the cold of winter still remains, the weather is gradually getting warmer and you can feel the tinge of spring everywhere.

``Usui'', which is the next seasonal season after ``First Spring'', is considered to be the first season of spring.

The first day of spring marks the beginning of the new season, and also marks the beginning of a new year. Therefore, shrines all over the country hold spring festivals and many other auspicious events.

For more information on "First Day of Spring," please refer to [New Year's Customs].

Now, I would like to introduce the events that take place around the time of [First Spring].

1. First day of spring

In the new calendar, there is New Year's Eve to celebrate New Year's Day.

On the first day of spring, there is Setsubun.


In Japan today, the culture of celebrating the first day of spring and ``lunar new year'' is becoming rarer, and people are more familiar with Setsubun's ``ehomaki'' and ``mame-throwing.'' In recent years, culture and lifestyles have changed rapidly, and environmental issues have become a hot topic, but even as society as a whole changes, I feel even more grateful for the changing seasons and the universality of nature.

Our lives are always enriched by the seasons and culture. Let's enjoy this year again.

◆Celebration [Spring]◆

The first day of spring is a celebration of the New Year, and there are many things that have the meaning of ``bringing good fortune and warding off evil.''

We invite good fortune with auspicious names to celebrate the first day of spring.

●Daikichi of Spring●

The vertically written characters "Risshun Daikichi" can also be called from the back as "Risshun Daikichi." It is used as a ward against evil spirits, as it is said that if you put it on the front door, even if a demon were to enter your house, it would read ``Daikichi of Spring'' and would think it was outside the house and leave.

●First day of spring squeezed●

This auspicious sake is made by pressing the mash all night from the night of Setsubun, and then having the unprocessed sake freshly squeezed in the early morning of the first day of spring go to a shrine for purification.


●First day of spring sweets●

Japanese sweets made at the beginning of spring are called ``Risshun Namagashi.'' The representative one is "Risshun Daikichi Mochi." Red beans and mochi are said to have the effect of exorcising impurities, and the round shape of mochi means that things are contained in a circle. It is said to bring good luck if you eat all of it within the same day.


●Risshun tofu●

When eaten on Setsubun, it wards off various evil spirits, and when eaten on the first day of spring, it is called ``Daikichi tofu'' and is said to bring health into the body and bring happiness. When eating on Setsubun and the first day of spring, it is said that it is best to eat the white color, so it is recommended to eat it with salt instead of soy sauce.

2. Hatsu Uma

On the first horse day of spring, the Hatsuuma Festival is held at Inari shrines across the country.

This day is considered a festival day for Inari Shrine, as it is the day when the enshrined deity of Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine in Kyoto descended. In the farming community, the word "Inari" comes from the word "inari" and is widely worshiped as the god of rice. In addition, people pray for business prosperity and family safety.
There is also a custom of eating ``Oinari-san'' at the Hatsuuma Festival.
At Inari Shrine, foxes are enshrined as messengers of the gods, and fried tofu, which is a fox's favorite food, is now offered as an offering. In eastern Japan, it is called "inarizushi". This seems to be the reason why there is a strong tendency for people in western Japan to call them ``Oinari-san.''

In 2023, February 5th (Sunday) is Hatsuuma Day.

3. decorate hina dolls

Peach Festival, a cultural festival that celebrates healthy growth by decorating Hina dolls, is held on March 3rd every year.

◆When do you start decorating the dolls? ◆

It is said that it is best to display Hina dolls after the seasonal turning point, Setsubun, and between the beginning of spring and the next seasonal period, usui . It is also said that the days after Setsubun (after exorcising demons) are good days.

Is it no good to decorate from January?

Some people think that it is bad luck because it falls on Mitsukigake (Mitsukigake).
*What is ``Sangatsukake''? It is said that if it lasts for three months, it is bad luck as it is said that you will have to endure hardships from beginning to end. However, there are some regions that celebrate festivals according to the lunar calendar, so there is no need to worry about ``Sangatsukake.''



◆Hina dolls for yourself “My Hina”◆

There is no limit to the age at which you can decorate Hina dolls, and many people bring them to their wedding because they act as scapegoats for themselves to take on the burden of misfortune. In recent years, not only girls but also women of all ages have been decorating them as seasonal decorations, calling them ``my hina.''

4. climate

The seasons are gradually starting to change, as the saying goes, ``the beginning of spring.'' Therefore, it is also characterized by the fact that there are many expressions related to climate.

◆Haruichiban

Haru Ichiban refers to the first southerly wind that blows over a wide area between the first day of spring and the vernal equinox. When the temperature rises after this wind blows, it is recognized as the first season of spring. One of the well-known spring news.

◆Rain at the end of the cold (Kanake no Ame)

Rain at the end of winter refers to the rain that falls at the beginning of spring, when the cold weather ends, about a month after the onset of cold weather in January.

◆Return of cold (Kan no return)

The return of cold weather refers to the phenomenon in which the cold weather temporarily returns around the end of spring, when the weather has warmed up completely. When the temperature drops a while after the first day of spring, it is called cold return. It is often caused by low pressure systems that occur on the Sea of ​​Japan side, and is a phenomenon that tends to occur in the second half of April.



5. "Spring is bitter" - eat seasonal foods

Eating seasonal foods is considered to be very logical for our bodies, which live in accordance with the seasons.
As the saying goes, ``Spring is bitter,'' eating bitter spring wild vegetables is an important element in eliminating waste products and fats that have accumulated in the body during the winter , and making the body suitable for the early spring climate. Masu.
The representative variety during the first spring season is ``Fukinoto''. The butterbur sprouts that emerge from the snow in early spring have a unique aroma and a refreshing bitter taste. In addition, rooted mitsuba and snow peas are also spring vegetables. Among fish, white fish (white fish), mackerel (sawara), and herring (herring) are representative fish of spring. Please try incorporating one item that is in season.

6. Celebration of spring around the world

February is known as the month with the most festivals in the world, and celebrating the arrival of spring has become an important cultural event that helps ensure good harvest and good health throughout the year.

In Europe and America, it is also cherished and celebrated as a day to welcome spring.


The first day of spring is also the beginning of spring, and it is a celebration of ``the day when Christ visited the temple with the Virgin Mary, 40 days after his birth,'' and there is a tradition of burning a Christmas tree to mark the end of the Christmas season.

Carnivals are also held around the world to celebrate the arrival of spring. [Carnival] is a carnival festival , originally a festival held in spring to pray for fertility and fertility. Before Easter, there is a period of abstinence called ``Lent,'' and a grand feast is held before that period begins. For example, Rio Carnival and Nice Carnival. Examples include the Venice Carnival and the Nice Carnival.

6. National Foundation Day

February 11th is Japan's National Foundation Day.

National Foundation Day is a day to celebrate the establishment of the foundations of a nation.


It was established in 1966 as a day to remember the founding of the country and cultivate a love for the country.
February 11th is the day when the first emperor, ``Emperor Jimmu'', ascended to the throne.

Emperor Jinmu is a person who appears in Japan's oldest history books, the Kojiki and Nihon Shoki. The Kojiki describes the gods and how the country (land) of Japan was born. From this, it is thought that ``National Foundation Day'' is a day to commemorate the event itself, regardless of historical facts regarding the founding of the country.

It has been 2681 years since the founding of Japan.


National Founding Days are observed in countries all over the world, and the unique feature is that the date and name of the anniversary are derived from the history of the founding of the country.

〇China (National Day)
China's National Day is celebrated on October 1st as National Day. The term originates from Mao Zedong's declaration of the establishment of the Chinese state in Tiananmen Square on October 1, 1949. Although the country has a long history, as the saying goes, ``China has a 4,000-year history,'' it seems that the date when modern China was founded is not the same as the length of history. In China, there is a long holiday for about a week, including National Day, and on the day of National Day, firecrackers are set off and events are held all over China.

〇America (Independence Day)
In the United States, July 4th is designated as "Independence Day." Its name comes from the day the Declaration of Independence was signed by the Continental Congress in 1776. Independence Day is also known as "Independence Day," and the week including Independence Day is filled with events such as fireworks and concerts throughout the United States.

〇France (Battle Day)
France's National Day is July 14th, Bastille Day. The name originates from the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789, which marked the beginning of the French Revolution, and the release of political prisoners, which symbolized the end of absolute monarchy and the beginning of republican government for the people. On July 14th, fireworks are set off across France, and a military parade takes place in Paris.

 

  

Around the beginning of spring, the Seventy-Ninth War is expressed as follows.

First weather 1st weather <East wind thaw (harukazekoori o toku)>

Around February 4th to February 8th, 2023

 

When the spring winds begin to melt the ice on rivers and lakes.


In the bitter cold, when the butterbur flowers start to peek out from the snow-covered ground. It's a happy time that gradually makes you feel that spring is almost here.

 

Second choice 2nd choice

Around February 9th to February 13th, 2023

 

When the warblers start chirping in the mountain village

 

The voice of the nightingale heralds the beginning of spring. It is one of the three songbirds in Japan, and it is said that just hearing its song will bring you good luck.

At the beginning of spring, the song is unsteady, but as the spring lasts, it becomes more beautiful. In addition, warblers visit plum trees to suck the nectar from the plum blossoms, and the sight is so picturesque that the proverb goes, ``A nightingale in a plum blossom.'' It is used as an example of something that harmonizes beautifully.

Third case: Uo Koori Izuru

Around February 14th to February 18th, 2023

 

When fish jump from between cracked ice

 

It refers to the scene where the ice on the surface of a river gradually melts and becomes thin ice, with the river flowing beneath the ice and fish swimming around.

Beneath the thin ice, which cracks with the slightest impact, living things are already actively active. Just a little more until the bright spring.

 

 

The cold weather has ended and the season has turned to spring according to the calendar, but the cold of winter still remains in early spring.

There is a seasonal word for winter, ``sankanshion'' (three cold, four warm), but you can experience it during the first seasonal season, ``usui''.

As the saying goes, it means that ``cold days last for about three days, then warm days continue for about four days.'' As these days repeat, and the days gradually become warmer, we head towards spring. .
These days, I notice that the sun is getting longer little by little, and I start to feel the green Ibuki on the ground. Let's prepare our mind and body for spring weather little by little.

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