Otsukimi, "moon viewing", is called the 15th night, and formerly the day of the "feast of moon-watching" in Heian period. People have been enjoying the beauty of the full moon on this day since ancient times. The Heian nobles composed poetry in competition with each other while gazing at the moon. On Ohigan, the night becomes equal to the day in duration, while the Sun rises due East, and sets due West.
According to Buddhism, the azimuth of the setting Sun marked the direction to Sukhāvatī, or the Western Paradise, so this festival reflected the desire for the people's own ancestors' souls to travel there, as well.
[ Event ]
Mid autumn moon : The full moon day of September.
Equinoctial week : 7 days including 3 days before and after Autumnal Equinox Day.
[ Ingredients ]
Tsukimi dumpling, Red beans
[ Wishing plate ]
With feelings of gratitude, offerings of dango and oods harvested in autumn are made.
Read more articles of Japan Culture Project
→ Read more articles of Traditional Culture
→ Read more articles of Manga de Japan