What Does Rice Mean to the Japanese People?


Rice is a very important staple for the Japanese people.

In the past, it held significant economic value, with taxes being paid in rice and playing a crucial role in local economies. However, rice harvests are greatly influenced by the weather, so ancient rituals are performed to pray for a bountiful harvest. As a Result, Rice Cultivation Became Closely Linked to Religious Rituals Praying for Abundant Harvests"


Every year on November 23rd,

the Niiname-sai (新嘗祭) festival is held at shrines across the country.


The word "" (nii) signifies new grains (first harvest), and "" (name) means feasting. During this festival, people offer new harvest grains to all the deities, including Amaterasu Ōmikami, as a gesture of gratitude for the bountiful harvest bestowed upon them by the blessings of the gods.


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