Toka Ebisu

What is Toka Ebisu?

Toka Ebisu is a festival held on January 10th, and sometimes on the 9th or 11th, in honor of Ebisu. Ebisu is the god of commerce who is affectionately known in the Kansai area as “Ebessan.” As one of the Seven Lucky Gods, Ebisu is a famous god in Japan that stands for good fortune. Many people in Japan worship Ebisu and decorate their household Shinto shrines and storefronts with its lucky charms to pray for success in their business over the next year.

Fukuzasa are lucky bamboo branches that Japanese people place at home or in their shops to pray for success in their business. As bamboo grass has green leaves even in the harshest cold of midwinter, fukuzasa is a symbol for the ability of one’s business to endure hardship and challenges. One auspicious practice is to decorate fukuzasa with lucky charms such as handcrafted sea breams and rice bags.
Kumade are ornamental rakes resembling the tools that are used to sweep things up on the ground. As you might have guessed, these lucky charms are used during the festival to “rake in good luck and money.”

Seeing inthe New year

First Sunrise


In Japan, the first visit to a shrine or temple is called “hatsumode,” and is when people pray that the new year will be a good one. In most cases, hatsumode is done up until the 3rd of January. Many shrines sell New Year-only good luck charms or lucky goods, and many people visit early on New Year’s Day to buy the same ones each year.



back to page top