Today’s Holiday: Saigusa Matsuri

Today’s Holiday:
Saigusa Matsuri

For hundreds of years the citizens of Nara, Japan, have searched the surrounding mountains for lilies, gathering them each summer in preparation for the Lily Festival at the Isagawa Shrine. A Shinto priest carries a large bundle of flowers to the altar as an offering. Then the seven women perform a special dance in which they wave lily stalks in a motion designed to ward off the problems brought on by the wet weather typical this time of year. Afterwards, the lilies are mounted on a float and taken out in a procession through the streets of Nara, where it is believed that they will purify the air. More…:


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