Happy 2011!

We went to Hatsumōde (初詣, hatsumōde?) yesterday (January 1, 2011)  in NYC. There is no real Japanese Shinto shrines in United States except in Hawaii and Washington. Some people visit a Buddhist temple instead. So, we visited International Shinto Foundation located at 300 West 55th Street.  It is a condominium building,  and you will find this NPO in one of the apartment units. If you have been to one of real shrine in Japan, you will notice how plain the place is. However, they have Omikuji ((御御籤, 御神籤, or おみくじ are random fortunes written on strips of paper at Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples in Japan), Omiki (ritually purified sake). You can buy Ofuda, a talisman issued by a Shinto shrine.  I am not a religious person but love to go to shrine for Hatsumode because that’s the way I grown up, and it is  my culture. I wish I were Japan for the holiday…


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