Nagano Firefly Festival

With the advent of COVID-19, many events have been cancelled all over the world, but the firefly festival in Japan doesn't stop and this year the luminous insects dance by themselves.

The solitary dance of fireflies in 2020

Authore: Erika | Source: Japan Times

It is a magical moment when in Tatsuno, in the Nagano prefecture, the sun sets and thousands of fireflies begin to dance and shine, creating a unique spectacle. Usually, this event brings crowds of visitors to the city, however, due to the coronavirus pandemic, this year the spectators are not allowed to attend this event.

In fact, in this wacky 2020, the dance of incandescent insects takes place without spectators because the event has been cancelled. Nevertheless, although many fans were disappointed, an unusually serene and unique atmosphere was created. In fact, the insects do not stop and continue to shine, turning off and on, dancing in the night air. A natural spectacle that lasts only 10 days at the beginning of summer that marks the last chapter of a firefly's life.

Katsunori Funaki says that "The glow is the courting behaviour of fireflies. They glow is used to communicate between the male and female. During the short period of 10 days, they find a mate and lay eggs for the following year".

festival delle lucciole

In short, the firefly festival is a real date not to be missed. In fact, more than 30,000 perform this magic during those 10 days in Tatsuno, in the centre of Nagano prefecture. Mayor Yasuo Takei says "Historical evidence says that a huge number of fireflies were seen along the Tenryu River between the late 19th and early 20th century. These small creatures were almost extinct in the area due to the strong production of silk industries that created pollution.

However, after the Second World War, the city has worked hard to recreate and restore the suitable environment to protect the fireflies that now attract thousands of visitors during the annual summer festival. "When we have a lot of fireflies, we get a spectacular landscape full of lights, with both stars and fireflies shining reflected in the water," said Takei. A unique event and landscape.

festival delle lucciole

Precisely because of the strong importance that this festival has, the city has created a park with ditches to bring fresh water from the river, with waterfalls and an aquatic house rich in oxygen for insects.

Firefly festivals have been held since the end of June in many parts of Japan, and this ritual of luminous courtship is highly celebrated throughout the country.

"Fireflies are creatures that grow for over a year and fly for only 10 days to leave the next generation before they die," said the festival organizer. "We want to take care of them so that they leave their eggs for next year and we will see fireflies dance wonderfully once again.


Introduction to Japanese poetry

Italy, France, England, America and many other countries in the world offer a vast poetic production, but what is Japanese poetry like? Here we are on this fascinating literary journey to discover something more about the Land of the Rising Sun!

Poesia giapponese

photo credits: grangerprints.printstoreonline.com

Introduction to Japanese poetry

Author: Sara | Inspiration: Tokyo Weekender

Japanese Poetry: Kanishi

photo credits: wikimedia.org

Curiously, most of the literary works of Japanese poetry were born during the Tang Dynasty, from the encounter of Japanese poets with Chinese ones. And so, under Chinese influence, Kanshi 漢詩 became the most popular form of poetry during the early Heian period among Japanese aristocrats and became increasingly popular in the modern period, especially among academics and intellectuals. The themes were free, while the forms were more rigid: the classical ones counted about 5 or 7 syllables in 4 or 8 lines, following the rules of Lushi 律詩 (rhyme on even lines with a regulated tone) and jueju 絕句 (rhyme in even lines and composed only of quatrains) based mainly on the tone of Mandarin Chinese.
The major exponents of this style are certainly Kukai, Sugawara no Michizane, Maresuke Nogi and Natsume Soseki.

Waka

Poesia giapponese

photo credits: https://matcha-jp.com/jp/289

Unlike Kanshi, Waka 和歌 was classical poetry written in Japanese with two very precise forms: Choka, 長歌, or long poems with no length restrictions. The structure is simple and consists of 2 lines of 5 or 7 syllabic sounds (which determine the accent) that ends with 3 lines of 5, 7 and again 7 syllabic sounds. Tanka, 短歌, instead has a similar structure, but they are shorter poems, often consisting of only five groups of words respectively of 5, 7, 5, 7 and, finally, 7 syllabic sounds. Waka does not follow the rhyming rules and is still very popular in modern Japan, even if now the Tanka form is preferred: the more incisive brevity reflects as always the essentiality of deep culture. The poet par excellence is certainly Machi Tawara.

Haiku

Poesia giapponese

photo credits: wikimedia.org

What is the Japanese poetic composition that we consider among the most famous? Without a shadow of a doubt, it's the Haiku, 俳句. Loved by all, it is usually composed of 3 verses and 17 total syllabic sounds, schematically 5/7/5. Haiku experienced its development in the Edo period when many poets relied on this genre to describe nature and human events directly related to it. In fact, these small "compositions of the soul" express the beauty of every single instant, representing "the moment" and giving the reader that sense of "enlightenment" thanks to the images that the words evoke. The most famous and beloved poets are undoubtedly Basho, Yosa Buson, Kobayashi Issa, and Masaoka Shiki.

Our journey into Japanese poetry ends here, for now. This is a very short overview that has allowed us to enter the world of literature of our beloved Japan. What is your favourite form of poetry among the above? Mine is easy to guess: I particularly love Haiku. Here is one of my favourites by Matsuo Basho:

Let's take
the marshy path
to get to the clouds.

Continue to follow us to discover other little pearls of this oriental world and I recommend that you continue on the path you have taken: happiness is always in front of you!


Shinrin-yoku, forest bathing

The Shinrin-yoku so loved by the Japanese is what we call "forest bathing" and can be healing and regenerating. This practice, whose major exponent is Dr. Qing Li of the Nippon Medical School in Tokyo, is also becoming very famous here in the West. But let's see in detail what it is.

Shinrin-yoku, the forest bathing loved by the Japanese

Author: Erika | Source: Tokyo Weekender

Shinrin-yoku

One of the world's biggest health trends at the top of the charts, the Shinrin-yoku has become internationally renowned. However, its diffusion dates back to the late 1980s in Japan. In fact, Forest Bathing has for years been considered a true practice of preventive medicine in the land of the Rising Sun. In support of this, there are numbers of researches conducted around the world that have shown how to spend regular periods of time immersed in the quiet of the woods helps to strengthen the immune defences and prevent diseases But what exactly is this about?

What is Shinrin-yoku, Forest Bathing?

Literally, Shinrin-yoku (森林浴) combines the kanji of "forest" and "bath", and is commonly translated as "bath in the forest". Promoted some forty years ago by the Japanese government, Shinrin-yoku consists of walking in the woods and applying special breathing techniques. However, forest bathing activities are not limited to breathing. In fact, whether you stay active or simply decide to take some time to relax in the forest area, this also brings you back to this practice.

First used in 1982, this term was promoted by the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to encourage healthy lifestyles and protect the nation's beautiful natural ambients. Since 1986, the Forsetale Agency together with the Green Civilization Society has indicated more than 100 areas throughout Japan where this concept of bathing is possible. Even today, there are various techniques to keep healthy, but forest bathing is one of those concepts that goes well with Japanese ideology.

In the early 2000s, several universities and research centres conducted experiments to find out how effective this practice was. The various studies were unanimously positive. In fact, it has been shown how spending time between trees reduces stress, improves mood, lowers pulse rate and blood pressure. But not only that, it also increases concentration and creativity as well as strengthening our immune system. 

Perhaps sensitivity, and in particular deeply spiritual and historical respect for the natural world, has made this practice thrive in this nation.

Shinrin-yoku

Forest Bathing becomes international

Following the strong success achieved in Japan (about 5 million people practice Shinrin-yoku in the country alone), forest bathing has also become very popular internationally. Today, in fact, it has many followers also in the West, the Duchess of Cambridge herself is a fan, as reported by The Guardian. In this regard, in England, many institutions are promoting this practice as a way to relieve daily stress.

One of the leading figures on the subject, Quing Li, president of the Society of Forest Medicine in Japan and author of the book Shinrin-Yoku: The Art and Science of Forest Bathing, commented:

"Shirin-yoku is for all intents and purposes a preventive medicine. People spend most of their lives indoors. In the case of the Japanese it is 80% of the time, and in the case of the Americans it is as much as 90%. But man is made to live outdoors. We are designed to be connected to the world of nature".

You have to try the Shinrin-yoku

Forest bathing is an easy and inexpensive activity. In fact, it can be done at any time, whatever the weather conditions and does not require special equipment or physical fitness. You can build your experience to measure and according to your needs.

In Japan, the Forest Therapy Society is a non-profit organization that identifies areas with forests and pedestrian roads that have been scientifically evaluated. Here you will find a certified "forest bathing effect". Currently, 62 areas have been certified in Japan, each of which offers "forest therapy roads" with wide access paths suitable for quiet walks, some of which are also wheelchair accessible.

In Italy, we find several destinations equipped for forest bathing, first and foremost Trentino Alto Adige. In fact, on the Renon plateau and in Fai Della Paganella, we find nature guides specialized in "balance excursions" and a "Parco del Respiro". It is precisely this region, in the last few years, has put a lot of emphasis on full immersion experiences in nature, including forest bathing.

But that's not all, also in Piedmont within the Zegna Oasis, we find three paths dedicated to forest bathing, which are unique in Europe.


Focus on: Nambu ironware

If we think of typical Japanese furniture, we immediately think of an iron teapot, also known as Nambu ironware.

The Nambu ironware and its history

Author: Erika | Source: Tokyo Weekender

Nambu Tekki, or Nambu ironware, is a specific method typical of the city of Morioka in Iwate Prefecture. Created in the middle of the Edo period, this art is named Nambu after the feudal domain of the same name. Modern techniques also use the molten metal produced near Morioka, in Sendai or the present-day town of Oshu.

Nambu

Rust-resistant, durable and well-insulated, these objects provide uniform heat circulation. In fact, the outside of the kettles has an irregular texture called ploughing or hail. This is often used in Nambu ironware dishes and kettles are the representative product. However, the various models change from artisan to artisan because each artist is free to create his or her own model at will.

The History of Nambu ironware

Nambu ironware products sink their history into the production of tableware for the Tea Ceremony during the homonymous domination in the middle of the 17th century. Thanks to the abundance of iron resources, Morioka was a perfect area for the foundry industry.
In fact, in 1659, a feudal lord who wanted to promote the tea ceremony ordered Nizaemon Koizumi to move to Kyoto. It was here, in the area around the castle in Nambu, that the kettles began to be made.

The Koizumi family

Craftsmen par excellence during the Nambu domain, this family launched for the first time the pots used for the tea ceremony. The tea casting technique and control were passed down from father to son. Not only traditional products, but this family was also the focus of innovations for the time. In fact, the famous Nambu Iron Kettle was invented by the third generation of the Koizumi family. The Taisho Emperor himself, who reigned from 1912 to 1926, visited the Tohoku region for this family. In fact, in 1908, on the occasion of the visit, the eighth generation of the Koizumi showed the emperor the production process of these iron tools. This event was so famous that all the national newspapers of the time talked about it. In fact, even today, all the pieces produced in the Morioka and Mizusawa areas in Iwate are still called "Nambu Ironware".

Nambu Ironware

More than just tea

Although the products related to the tea ceremony are the most famous among the Nambu ironware, there are many other items related to the home that can be purchased. In fact, Western kitchen cooks know that one of the best investments you can make is a cast iron frying pan.
However, other Nambu ironware items that are worth buying are the furin (the Japanese windchimes), incense holders, small decorations but also chopsticks holders.

Nambu

Have you ever bought any of these items or would you like to take some? Let us know in the comments or on our Facebook page!


Photo Gallery: Kyoto without tourists

The pandemic is slowly passing and the tourism industry in Japan, as well as in Italy, has suffered a severe blow. We are not yet entirely allowed to resume travelling, but it is at these times that we have to find the beauty of things. We also refer to the possibility of being able to discover landscapes and corners of cities that we could not see before, often also because of tourists. As a highly desirable destination for tourists, Kyoto has developed a love-hate relationship with visitors. With 8.31 million tourists from overseas, the ancient capital is definitely one of the most popular cities in Japan. 

Kyoto without tourists, a leap into the past

Author: Erika | Source: The Japan times

However, tourism is always a bit of a double-edged sword. While it prunes a lot of revenue to the visited countries, it also leads to overcrowded cities. In tourist places like Kyoto, it is really rare to be able to enjoy the landscapes without visitors. Nevertheless, due to COVID-19 and the closing of world borders, the number of visitors has dropped dramatically, leaving many of these places undisturbed. Through these photos, taken by the reporters of The Japan Times at the end of April, we can see a deserted city and admire its monuments in all their splendour.

Kinkakuji

One of the most famous sites and destination of many tourists is certainly the Kinkakuji, also known as the Temple of the Golden Pavilion. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994, this landmark has more than 5 million visitors a year. The current pavilion dates back to 1955 after the original was burned by a novice monk. However, the complex dates back to the 14th century. - Photos by Oscar Boyd

Kyoto

Fushimi Inari, a destination that every year attracts about 2.7 million visitors, a landmark known for its senbon torii (1000 torii, even if in reality they are 10 thousand in total), was like this. Those who have been there are aware that to be able to take such a picture under normal conditions you have to go there very early in the morning and wait several minutes to get the perfect shot of the empty tunnel. The photographer Gabriele Bortolotti took this picture at noon, in a deserted sanctuary at the end of April.

Nishiki's market, also known as "Kyoto's Kitchen" stretches for about 1.5km between Teramachi and Shinmachi districts in Kyoto. Among the increasingly popular souvenir shops, knife shops, the headquarters of traditional Japanese food suppliers and everything related to the kitchen, Oscar Boyd took this photo.

Kyoto

We move on to the wooden architectural tradition of Higashimaya. This area is very popular among people looking for a traditional Japan, without cement, glass and neon. This is how it looked under the eyes of Oscar Boyd at the end of April 2020.

Kyoto

Ginkakuji, the Silver Pavilion, built in the 15th century in the style of the Golden Pavilion, was not originally covered with the precious material. The complex has since become famous for its large Japanese garden which attracts around 5 million visitors every year. - Photos by Gabriele Bortolotti

Kyoto

The Yasaka Pagoda, one of the landmarks of the upper area of Higashimaya District, the last permanent structure of the 6th century Hokanji Temple looked like this at the end of April. - Photos by Oscar Boyd

Kyoto

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Kiyamizudera temple on the side of Mount Otowa, in the eastern part of Higashimaya district is one of the landmarks not to be missed by visitors to Kyoto. Founded in 780 and rebuilt after a fire in the 15th century, work on the Okunoin Hall was completed in March. The temple attracts about 5 million tourists every year and yet in this weird 2020, it was completely empty. - Photos by Oscar Boyd


Shikadamari, the deer gathering in Nara

One of Japan's most characteristic cities is Nara together with its deers and every year it is here that the Shikadamari takes place. But what exactly is this strange and unique phenomenon? What drives hundreds of deers to gather for an hour at this place in Nara Park every evening in summer?

Shikadamari, the phenomenon of the deer gathering in Nara

Author: Erika | Source: Soranews24.com

If you have ever been in the city of Nara, near the prefecture of Kyoto, probably one of the destinations you will have seen is Nara Park and its large deer population. The peculiarity of these deers is that they roam the city undisturbed, but not only that, they also ask for a lot of cookies! For this very reason, you may have had to run away from one of them while this curious deer was poking its nose into your bag.

Shikadamari Nara

However, if you've come to this city in the summer, you'll find these nice creatures much less noisy in the evening. In fact, after sunset, a very particular phenomenon called "shikadamari" happens. This Japanese term translates as "deer gathering point" and is an unofficial term coined especially for this wildlife event.

What is Shikadamari

After sunset on summer evenings, around 6:30 p.m., deers gather near Nara Park to stop in this particular place in front of the National Museum of Nara, right inside the park.
 Indeed, it is not unusual to find deers relaxing in the park, but it is rare to see a large number of these animals all gathered in the same spot. The most disconcerting thing is that they all gather in the same place, at the same time and for the same amount of time. From 6:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., you can see the deers sitting in silence. However, after 7:00 p.m., they stand up and return to the different areas of the park.

Shikadamari Nara

According to a survey by the Nara Deer Preservation Foundation, the Park is home to about 1388 deer, and almost half the wildlife population participates in this gathering. What could that indicate?

Plausible explanations

Therefore, one of the plausible explanations for this phenomenon is that deers gather in this particular place to cool off. After all, with the hot temperatures of the Japanese summer, in this place we find a breath of fresh air instead.
 Despite everything, this very piece of land in front of the museum is one of the sunniest parts of the entire park during the day. Theoretically, therefore, the earth is very overheated, but perhaps it is this mix of warm earth and fresh air that attracts the deer to the shikadamari.

Shikadamari

In this regard, the Nara Deer Preservation Foundation says:

"We have reports of deer gathering in front of the Nara National Museum. We don't even know why they gather there. We're sorry we can't be of any help".

Shikadamari Shikadamari

With this answer, therefore, the Shikadamari phenomenon remains to all intents and purposes one of the mysteries of Japan. And do you have any particular idea why deer gather every night in summer at this very spot in the park? Let us know on on our Facebook page or in the comments below!


Wood and Japanese architecture

If you have ever been to Japan or even seen photos, you will have noticed that Japanese architecture is characterized by the use of wood as the primary material. Today we see how this traditional material has become an emblem of Japanese architecture.

Wood, mold and fire in Japanese architecture

Author: Erika | Source: Nippon.com

Japan's wet environment has made it possible to develop an architectural style mainly focused on the use of wood. In fact, in summer, humidity levels reach peaks that we can hardly conceive of here in Europe. However, if you have been to Japan during the months of June and July, you will have noticed that you sweat even while standing still. For this very reason, in the history of this country, techniques and materials have been developed to help compensate for this problem. In fact, the raised floors and open spaces typical of traditional houses have guaranteed adequate ventilation to combat the accumulation of toxic mould. In addition, the wooden construction with mullions and beams not only helps against moisture but also becomes useful in the design for resistance to typhoons and earthquakes.

architettura giapponese architettura giapponese

Although fires have been frequent in the history of Japan, historically the Japanese have built almost exclusively with wood. Certainly, the fire was a persistent problem and this is reflected in the severity of the current fire laws. However, judging by history, it seems that the major cause of the problem was the natural disasters that led Japanese architecture to take the forms we all know.

The constant presence of mould in Japanese architecture

Actually, mould is a constant problem not only for Japan but a little bit for the whole world. In fact, today we were able to create a solution by applying modern architectural techniques.
Much of Japan has ideal conditions for mould because of the various types of mushrooms present in the country. In addition, temperatures rarely fall below zero and humidity can last over 70% for long periods of time. These are all ideal conditions for mould to form, but traditional wooden construction alleviated this problem. In fact, with these construction techniques, the building was raised from ground level leaving the walls open so that air could flow freely in the spaces. Because of this problem, older buildings contain very little furniture and equipment. Temples, sanctuaries, palaces and traditional houses fall into this category.

Japan and tradition

As we all know, Japan is a very traditionalist country and Japanese architecture is no less. However there is a strong preference for the new, in fact, large companies do not hide to design houses to last about 30 years, after that the house should be demolished and rebuilt. This is almost inconceivable from a Western point of view, but reconstruction is a perfect way to completely eliminate mould, infestation and other problems.

The culture of reconstruction has, in fact, ancient roots in Japan because until the 8th century AD the death of an emperor was the cause of the displacement of the royal palace and the capital. Moreover, there was a saying in the Edo period that read "fire is one of the two flowers of Edo, as the city often blossomed". Whether the cause was fires or abrupt changes, these reasons have significantly lowered the average life of buildings. However, moving a house meant throwing everything except the wooden structure, the framing was in fact dismantled and reassembled with a fresh roof and curtain walls. In fact, this not only solved the problems of mould or other problems but also preserved the most durable parts of a house. Precisely for this reason, today we find extremely old and recycled beams and columns in many farmhouses.

Wood VS Metal

During the Tokugawa Shogunate, political decisions limited the use of metal fasteners and this was also an important factor in the development of carpentry in Japanese architecture. In fact, despite the fact that steel was already widely used, metal fasteners had no comparison with the longevity of wooden joints. In fact, in unseasoned wood, these fixings were strongly subject to seasonal shrinkage and expansion of the surrounding material. Also, when exposed to air, they are subject to rapid oxidation due to Japan's humid climate.

architettura giapponese architettura giapponese

On the contrary, an all-wooden junction becomes stronger and stronger as time goes by. In fact, calculations show that the latter may be structurally more solid even in the centuries following construction. Wood gains in strength for 200-300 years after being cut, but gradually decreases after that. For this very reason, the heavy roofs of traditional Japanese architecture are impossible to build without an elaborate wooden structure.

To withstand the weather and typhoons, these roofs should be supported by large stone walls, but in a country where earthquakes are so common and typhoons so devastating, it becomes too impractical. In addition, during the rainy season, condensation would occupy and ruin all the walls. In traditional Japanese architecture, the entire wooden supporting structure is open for visual inspection, meaning that any water infiltration was easily identified and handled quickly.

Japanese architecture and earthquake-proof houses

As we well know, Japan is frequently hit by earthquakes that do not seem to create too much damage. This is not because earthquakes are less violent, but thanks to the anti-seismic techniques of Japanese architecture. In fact, earthquake resistance is the third reason why Japanese architecture primarily uses wood in its constructions.

In Western culture, houses are solidly bonded to the foundations, which makes them a solid earthquake-resistant box with walls strong enough to withstand lateral shocks. As a result, the building will move with the ground, however, making the occupants feel the full force of the earthquake. In Japanese culture, on the other hand, construction using wooden joints makes everything more flexible. In this way, the lateral energy of an earthquake is absorbed by the bending of the junctions themselves, allowing the building with a heavy roof to remain standing even during strong tremors. To make you understand better, many old buildings are constructed in a similar way to a wooden chair, with supporting pillars without walls connected both at the top, where the roof rests and at the bottom. This allows you to support the weight safely and dynamically.

Thanks to the use of this technique, most traditional buildings are not based on foundations or basements. However, one might expect that during an earthquake the structure will jump from the base stones, the masonry walls will break and the beams will bend or break. But a well-built wooden building remains standing, in fact even in contemporary construction basic insulation is becoming a standard for seismic design even though it is illegal in Japan.

So many forests equal so much wood

Here is the latest reason why we find this preference for wood in Japanese architecture. In fact, the ready availability of timber and the use in traditional construction, cypress and pine, for example, are ready for harvesting and use only after 40-60 years of growth. Japanese carpenters have in fact become experts in making the most of wood construction techniques for many generations. This has not only allowed us to specialize in the use of this material but has also left us a rich heritage of buildings that are not only cultural heritage, but also teach us in the West to become more sustainable and safe without giving up modernity.


Everything there is to know about Maneki Neko

Surely you have seen Maneki Neko, whether or not you are a fan of Japanese tradition. Shall we give this wonderful and lucky Japanese kitten special attention? Let's take a closer look at them.

Maneki Neko, the beckoning cat from Japan

Author: SaiKaiAngel

Also known as "lucky cat" is famous all over the world. The Maneki-Neko is a true Japanese symbol, with origins in Tokyo during the Edo period.

Originally Maneki Neko were made of wood, metal, porcelain or cast iron. Today they can be found in all kinds of materials, especially plastic.

Maneki Neko

photo credits: www.dailyartmagazine.com

The origins

The origins are shrouded in mystery. There are some tales and the most famous is that of the samurai who, sitting in the rain under a large tree in front of a temple, was called with a nod of his paw. The samurai then headed towards him and at that very moment, a flash of light struck the tree under which he had been a few moments earlier. The cat then saved the samurai from certain death.

Another story tells of a shopkeeper who caught a cat in the rain, and the cat sat down in front of the shop, beckoning the customers to come in, as a sign of thanks.

Another legend, perhaps a little more bizarre, revolves around a courtesan who loved her domestic cat. The owner convinced that the cat was possessed, cut off his head in an attempt to exorcise it, just as a snake was about to bite the courtesan. The decapitated head flew in the air and landed on the snake, killing it instantly and saving the girl. The girl felt desperate because of the loss and, to give her a smile someone made her a statue of her cat, it seems that so was born the first Maneki-Neko.

The differences between Maneki Neko

Maneki Neko

photo credits: @punamkhokhar

The cats all look similar, but if you look closely, you will discover even very small variations that change their meaning.

For example, depending on the position of the paw, Maneki Neko has different meanings:

  • Left leg raised: attracts customers and good business. So Maneki Neko with the left paw raised is suitable for businesses, shops and activities that take place mainly at night such as nightclubs, bars and discos.
  • Right leg raised: wish money and good luck.
  • Both legs raised: it can mean "double luck!" and protection from bad luck, although the gesture can also be seen as a celebratory cheer. Obviously the legs must be at a different height because at the same height they would mean "surrendered" and obviously this is not the case of our Maneki Neko.

We can also occasionally find a coin together with the cat and this, of course, represents prosperity, wealth and money.
The bib and bell are generally associated with protection and abundance.

Who to give the Maneki Neko to?

Obviously, depending on the person we want to pay tribute to, it will be positioned differently. How to find the right place? Read here:

  • At home: it should be located in the southeast part of the house, which is the wealth/money area.
  • For work: Maneki Neko is usually kept close to the entrances so that people who enter can actually see it. If this is not possible, it can be kept in the northeast area of the business premises.
  • For offices: place your Maneki Neko as close to the office as possible.

Of course, even depending on the colour, it has a different meaning, let's go see them all:

  • Tricolour: attracts good luck, wealth, prosperity.
  • White: the color of purity, white Maneki Neko attract purity and happiness.
  • Black: they are seen as guards. They protect against negative energies and evil. They also help drive out stalkers and provide security, comfort and peace.
  • Golden colour is associated with wealth and money. This Maneki Neko attracts material and monetary benefits and therefore can be found a lot in shops, restaurants and other workplaces.
  • Red: red, like black, is a protector and is used to protect against evil and disease. It is good to keep one in the children's room.
  • Pink: pink is the colour of love, so this Maneki Neko attracts love and romance.
  • Green: this Maneki Neko helps students to increase their concentration towards their studies, protecting them from diseases and helping them to heal if they need it.
  • Blue: attracts peace, harmony and happiness for family members.