Summer Purification

“Harae (or harai)” is the general term for rituals of purification in Shinto. Nowadays, the ceremonies are annually held twice a year both at the end of June and the end of the year.


A summer purification ceremony known as “Nagoshi-no-Harae” is on June 30. During this season, it is a custom, especially in Kyoto, to eat Japanese confection called “Minazuki”, a triangle-shaped sweet rice jelly topped with sweet red beans. It is believed that red beans drive away evil spirits and the triangle shape represents ices in order to relieve the heat. As such, people have withstood the oppressive heat from old times.

I assume teatime is a must for every people in every period.