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Home » 5. Rites and Festivals » Individual Shrine Observances
Chōnahajime shinji
The chōnahajime shinji (First Planing of the Year) is held on January 11 at Hinomisaki Jinja in the town of Taisha, Hikawa County, Shinagawa Prefecture. After the ceremony, the miyashō holds a service at the haiden. Offerings of kelp and dried squid are heaped in earthenware vessels and presented before the deity. Zenisashi (cords used to string money) are placed on top of vessels filled with rice; these cords are then rubbed on the surface of the lumber three times. The shinsen (sacred offerings) are taken down, the jōboku (suminawa) ritual is performed, and the lumber is planed with an adze.
       A chōnahajime is also held at Mononobe Jinja in Ōda City, Shimane Prefecture, on January 7. Two carpenters mark the lumber with ink, beginning with one mark on the right end, then one on the left, then one in the middle, and then do a chōnahajime with a hatchet. They return their tools to the box, worship and end the service. The carpenters of the village do not start work until this ritual is completed.

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