Obon (Japan)

Inari

Themes:

Death; Kinship; Ghosts; Fertility; Love

Symbols:

Fox; Rice; Red

About Inari:

Among the Japanese, Inari is invoked to bring a long life, blood-red being her sacred hue. In death, she guides and protects faithful spirits. Portrayed as a vixen, Inari also has strong correlations with love, an emotion that survives even the grave. Rice is a common offering for Inari, as it is a crop to which she brings fertility.

To Do Today:

The Obon is a festival for the dead in Japan, where people hold family reunions and religious rituals to honor their departed ancestors and dance to comfort the spirits. These observances are fairly easy to duplicate. Gather with friends or family, and include rice cakes and fruit as part of your menu planning. Leave out an extra platter of food both for the spirits of the departed and to please Inari.

To increase Inari’s love in any relationship, or to draw a lover to you, make this charm: Find a red-colored stone (agate is a good choice), or any red-colored piece of clothing. Put this under the light of a full moon to charge it with emotional fulfillment. Then bless the item, saying,

Inari be, ever with me.

By this stone [cloth] of red, let love be fed.

When at [on] my side, let love there abide.

Put the stone in your pocket (so it’s at your side) and carry it when meeting with that special someone.

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