Japan, Travel

だるま

だるま好きである。ロンドンの我が家には現在5つのだるまが、願い事を内に秘めて点在している。中には願い事がかなったものもあり、両目でジッと私達の毎日を守ってくれている。

そもそも、だるまは中国禅宗、菩提達磨(サンスクリット語Bodhi-dharma)の座禅姿を模して張り子で作られたものであり、その名dharmaの音写から「だるま」となったとされるのが通説。今や宗教を超えて「七転び八起き」の縁起物ともいえるだるまは、世界中で愛されている。

何よりあの風貌と自信たっぷりな存在感、色彩が家にあると何だか心強い。願い事のしまい場所としては頼りになる容姿である上に、厄よけにもなりそうな気がする。倉敷の阿智神社で小さな「だるま神社」に遭遇した時には、思わず「あっ」と声が出てしまったくらい感激した。願い事が叶った何十体のだるまが、両目を開けて訪問者を迎えてくれる。

願い事、叶いますように。

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We love Daruma; there are 5 in our London home holding our special wishes. Traditionally, Daruma come without eyes and you paint the left eye making a wish, when you achieve your dream, you can paint the right eye. One of our Daruma happily got both eyes and is watching us gently.

The name “Daruma” came from the founder of the Zen sect of Buddhism, Bodhi-dharma. Legend says his legs melted away while he was meditating for 9 years without moving. In Edo period (1615-1868), toy creators put small weights inside of Daruma that became popular as tumble-dolls for kids. Because of that they had also added the meaning of “fall 7 times, rise 8 times”. Now Daruma is loved beyond it’s religious meanings.

In addition to the spiritual connections, I love Daruma for their confident appearance. I can definitely trust them to protect us from any bad luck and danger. When we saw a small shrine inside of Achi Shrine in Okayama, I was so touched and amazed by the sacral air around them. Dozens of Daruma with both eyes welcomed visitors with great confidence.

I hope our dreams will come true…

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6 thoughts on “だるま

  1. Thank you for your comment! Yes, Daruma got such an interesting history…very fascinating indeed. Once you get one, you will want another one… : )

  2. Thank you for your comment! You can get a Daruma from many places in Japan but the best ones are at temples. It’s always nice to have a Daruma who is blessed by monks.

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