City-Go-San children’s festival in Japan — November 15
November 15 or the week that includes November 15. everywhere in Japan you can see the incredibly charming, dressed in bright kimonos kids, hurrying with moms-dads-grandparents to the nearest Church, because in these days we celebrate favorite holiday of the ancient Japanese city-Go-San. The translation of the title is incredibly simple: the city is seven, five, and San is three.
This children’s festival, whose history goes back more than 300 years, is a common birthday for all children, which this year was 3, 5 or 7 years. These odd numbers has always been considered magical in Japan, and their corresponding ages reflected important stages of growing up children.
Holiday city-Go-San accompanies many traditional rituals and traditions. One of the most ancient and important ceremonies for boys and girls from the age of three, was considered the rite kamioki — “saving the hair”. In ancient Japan, in early childhood children are shaved bald, then they grow long beautiful hair, always rightly considered the pride of the Japanese. Day kamioki boys grew their hair so that they could tie at the nape, and girls tied tufts of hair on the sides.
Also in the middle ages in aristocratic families, boys in three years for the first time wore hakama — traditional men’s clothing in the form of wide trousers with pleats. Later, this ceremony has been held in five years, it’s the age when samurai represented the children of their feudal Lord, leading them into the circle of adults.
For girls more important the age of seven, as on this day they tied the first “adult” belt for kimono — Obi. This ceremony, called Obi-currents (the”zone change”), symbolizes growing up, because on that day the girl the first time he dresses like a grown woman.
Generally, age seven years in Japan is considered the most important stage of growing up a little man — previously, people in Japan believed that the birth of a child in the home infuses itself a celestial being, or his messenger, and that until the age of seven a child is not a simple man, but a divine creation.
This belief explains the fact too lenient, at first glance, the attitude of Japanese parents exhibit towards their young children unconditionally indulging any of their whims and pranks. A little more where little children are so spoiled, as in Japan. However, after the child reaches the “critical” age seven attitude changing, as from this time he considered turning into a normal human, and is replaced by cloudless years of happy and serene childhood comes a period of demanding and harsh upbringing. But in the holiday city-Go-San children are little lords.
Parents always cared to make this holiday memorable and vivid in the child’s life. The main ceremonial custom of the holiday — a visit to the temple: festively dressed up parents bring boys three and five and girls of three and seven years in a Shinto Shrine to thank the gods for the fact that children grow up healthy and happy.