The journey of my life 7; New year celebration in Japanese traditional style.

Good day everyone!Hope you enjoy your long holiday on New Year Day.

On end of December about What kind of activity Japanese people do on New Year Day?and they suddenly reply to me that "Most of Japanese people will go to shrine on new year day or the day before new year day for praying for better life all of the year and some of them will go to the mountain to see the first sunrise on the first date of the year". 
I went to Hokkaido Shrine on Jan 1, 2015
 These activities are very interesting for me. I was planed to visit both places on January 1, 2015 and also introduced Indonesian friends go with me as well. For my schedule included - Going to Moiyama mount as early as we can for see first sunrise of this year. - Going to Hokkaido shrine to pray for our better life in this year. - Going to Maruyama zoo near by Hokkaido shrine. - Going to shopping. But we have a time problem which mean we can't to going to Moiyama mount before sun rising because the first train from kita 24 station is on 6.10 am and to get moiyama mount is complicate (Take sub way from kita 24 station to Odori station and then take tram for 20 minute and take  cable car to the top of mountain for 30 minute that means sun probably rise. then we have to cancel for this trip and waiting to see first sunrise at our dormitory. 
The first sunrise of year 2015 at Hokkaido University International House Kita 23 on 7.15 AM.
We went to Hokkaido shrine and other place by subway because there's one day ticket for Holiday and weekend within 520 yen which we can go everywhere by Sapporo subway.The hokkaido shrine is near by Maruyama Koen station 

At the shrine was very busy place there're many people coming up and praying. I was a little stun and confused how can we praying in Japaneses it's definitely different from Thai praying.

And now Isearching for how can we correctly praying in Japanese shrine.

1) Pass through the torii gate.All shrines have a torii gate, even if they do not have a main sanctuary housing the spirit of a deity. A torii gate is the boundary line between holy ground and the secular world. Passing through the torii gate signifies that you have stepped into the domain of the deity. Though awareness of torii etiquette has dwindled recently, bowing once in front of the torii gate is the correct procedure. Also, the center of the pathway entering into the shrine is set aside as the area where the deity passes. Avoiding this center space and walking to the side area of the pathway is one key to a polite visit.
 2) Purify your hands and mouth at the "temizuya" water pavilionThe "temizuya" water pavilion consisting of a water basin and ladles is not a place to drink water. It is there to perform "misogi," a ritual to purify the body and mind with water before proceeding to stand in front of the deity. Originally this ritual was performed in the nude at special misogi locations like the ocean or a river, but today the ritual has been simplified to rinsing your hands and mouth at the temizuya. Wash yourself with the idea of washing away impurities in your heart as well as from your physical self.・First, scoop up water in a ladle with your right hand and pour water over your left hand.・Next, hold the ladle with your left hand and pour water over your right hand.・In your left hand, take some water that you have scooped with the ladle and rinse your mouth. Never touch the ladle directly to your mouth.・Lastly, using the remaining water, tip the ladle to rinse it off. *You only scoop up water one time, at the very first step of the process.
 3) At the altar, bow twice, clap your hands twice, and then bow once to pray.・Quietly throw in a "saisen" coin into the "saisenbako" offering box. The "saisen" coin is an offering to the deity. ・Ring the bell to greet the deity. (If there is no bell, omit this step) ・Bow twice. (2 bows)・Clap your hands twice. This clap has the same meaning as a hand clap to express happiness or appreciation. It expresses your joy of meeting with the deity and respect towards the deity. (2 claps) ・With your hands still together, express your feeling of gratitude in your mind without speaking.・Bow one more time. (1 bow)*The number of bows and handclaps may differ at some shrines.
There's Japanese style little market near Hokkaido shrine it was very interesting and many kind of food such as Takoyaki, Okoyamiyaki, Taiyaki, and sausage.

The Maruyama zoo is entry for free on New Year Day so we made decision to visit there.
Maruyama zoo is totally different from last 4 months that's the first time I visited, it's covered by snow and some animal have to stay in door especially topical animals. the topical animals seem unhappy to stay in door but some of animal (Penguin, wolf and deer) seem very happy.

Thank you so much

See you next season

Bye for now

PUTCHAKARN  Awassada (Mika)

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