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Photographer's Note

Toba no Himatsuri - the fire festival of Toba ( this is my fourth presentation of this extraordinary festival )

I take this shot after the great torches called Suzumi become embers, when the festival comes to an end with the offering of the holy tree. The spectators leave the dark site with the embers of bamboo trees

The purpose of the festival is to forecast the climate and the harvest of the coming year ( ancient traditions ).Toba area, divided into the West ‘Fukuji (the prosperous land)’ and the East ‘Kanji (the dry land), and they compete against each other until they take the holy tree and the 12 ropes out and offer them at the alter of the shrine
Legend says that the victory of the West ‘Fukuji’ ensures rain and a good harvest in the mountains; if the East ‘Kanji’ wins, there will be famine and disaster.

Chopsticks made from the embers of the burning bamboo sticks are also said to protect one from dental diseases, and the same bamboo used for sericulture brings fine silk.

ISO 400
13 Feb 2011 , 20:30

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Additional Photos by George Massahide (CycleEyes) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Note Writer [C: 214 W: 0 N: 10] (24)
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