Posted September 13th, 2011 in Japan No Comments »

Okuizome, literally meaning ‘first eating’, is a traditional Japanese ceremony in hopes that children would never worry about food in future.  It’s held either on the 100th, 110th, or 120th day after the birth.  Of course the baby can’t eat anything yet, so baby  just “pretend” to eat.

For this ceremony, traditionally we prepare fish, beans, boiled vegetables, soup and rice (white and red mochi (sticky rice ball) or red sticky rice (sekihan)).  Stone  is also prepared to wish a baby to have strong teeth.

I didn’t do it for Hiro just because I thought it’d be hard to prepare such a feast without being in Japan.  But, after receiving this photo from my friend and hearing the story, I kind of regret that I didn’t do it for Hiro.  I’m not really a traditional person but would like to keep some Japanese tradition.

I remember my friend (who lives in Japan now) did this okuizome ceremony in Perth few years ago, and I now admire her for doing it.  I think it’s important to keep such traditions, old manners and customs alive.

Since we are in Australia and can’t follow all Japanese traditional ceremonies for Hiro, I’d like to take him to shrine for omiyamairi when we go to Japan in November.  People usually visit a shrine for Omiyamairi 31 days after a baby boy is born (32 days for girls), but I think it’ll be still ok to pray for his or her health and happiness. 🙂

Talking about omiyamairi, he is also going to get baptized in church sometime soon, I think. I’m not catholic and don’t know much about catholic ceremonies, but I hear babies are usually baptized soon after birth. Hiro is already 6 months now :p
Well, he is lucky experiencing two kinds of ceremonies. We don’t know if he choses to be catholic, Buddhist or something else when he grows up, but it is all up to him and we respect his decision 🙂 It’s good to have many options open.

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