Glossary (Phrase list) >> Osaisen

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お賽銭, small donation


  O-Saisen 賽銭 is a custom to donate some money to the shrines and temples as the expression of gratitude to Shinto deities or Buddha for their accepting the visitors' worship. 

  It's said that ancient Japanese originally dedicated grains and came to give money after the Kamakural period.  Nowadays, it is a kind of manners to put some money into the Saisen-box 賽銭箱 when we visit shrines and temples.


  "Five yen" is pronounced "Go-en" which also means "good relationship".  So, many Japanese put 5, 50, 500...yen into the box.  But it's not necessary.  10, 100 or a bill is no problem.


Related page: "Worship manners" -Glossary-





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