Today is the winter solstice (Touji / 冬至 in Japanese).
“Touji (冬至)” is the 22nd of 24 solar terms (24 Sekki / 24節氣) in the traditional East Asian calendars.
“Touji” literally means winter reach, and actually means winter solstice.
On this day, the day time is the shortest and the night time is the longest in the northern hemisphere.
In Japan, people say if you have a hot bath scented with yuzu (an aromatic Japanese citron), and eat pumpkins, you won’t catch cold.
This year’s winter solstice is called “Sakutan Touji (朔旦冬至)” when winter solstice happens to be the first day of November in the old calendar. This happens once every 19 years.
Winter solstice is the Yin energy reaching the peak level and Yang energy is reborn at the same moment.
At the same time, the new moon is at the start of the cycle of the waxing and waning of the moon. Some say it is a good day to make plans.
So, “Sakutan Touji” is the rising time of both the sun and the moon. In ancient times, the Imperial Court used to have a grand celebration on the day.
It might be good to be thankful for things and make plans for the future today!
Category : text @en