Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The End of the Year in Japan: Jyoya-no-kane

Jyoya-no-kane is rung only once in each year. In many temples with a night watch bell, they start ringing the bell before the clock strikes the midnight, until it reaches108 times indicating the arrival of the New Year. Why 108 times? It is said in Buddhisim that each human being own 108 worldly desires, pains, and sufferings. By ringing the bell 108 times it gets rid of all of them and one can start the New Year with a clean slate.

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