Tsukimi (Moon-viewing) festival is coming.
Tsukimi, which means to observe the most beautiful moon of a year, was originally from ancient China and then developed into Japanese own cultural event. In ancient time, people used Chinese lunar calendar and the date was on the 15th day of the eighth month of the year. On the Gregorian calendar, it falls on a day in September or early October. Tsukimi festival is 21st of September this year, and it is coming soon!
The event it to worship the moon and celebrate the harvest. In Japan, the seven flower of autumn such as eulalia are displayed. eulalia is considered to symbolize the god of the moon.
Rice cakes are essential for Japanese events since the rice culture is rooted into Japanese spirit. At Tsukimi, people server moon cakes to thank for the harvest of the crops and pray for a good harvest in the future. The round moon cake resembles a full moon. When offering, spread white paper on the plate and put15 pieces (or 5 pieces, or the number of full moons of the year) inside. After watching the moon, it’s the time of relish the cakes, with respect to the God of moon.
The reason why rabbits are associated with Tsukimi image, there is no a definite answer. Some say that it is because the pattern on the moon looks like rabbits. Some say it first came from an Indian legend of the moon rabbits and was arranged in the Japanese version of fairy tale later. The story told that a rabbit had sacrificed himself as food to an old man, who in the end turned out to be a God. His high virtues impressed the God and was prized with an eternal life live in the moon.
It is said that by offering the eulalia, moon cakes with flowers, it would strengthen your connection with the God, receiving good health and happiness. With the addition of the mysterious power of the moonlight, it seems that there will be even more benefits.
Why not schedule a special night event at home, under the moonlight?