Red traditional sake set with hammer and spoon – 18 x 17.5 cm
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|Dimensions||18 × 17 cm|
Kagami-Biraki, a ceremony on festive occasions where the cover of the Sake barrel is broken open with a mallet and served for the benefit of all present. Kagami refers to the lid of the sake barrel and biraki means “open”. So that Kagami-Biraki literally means “to open the lid”. The round shape of the lid makes the Kagami a symbol of harmony. The Kagami Biraki therefore represents an opening to harmony and happiness. Sake Barrel The Sake Barrel Kagami-Biraki is said to have its origins in a different kind of kagami biraki, where mochi or “soft round rice cakes” are consumed on the first working day of the new year or at the beginning of special events. In the past, samurai households sacrificed a pile of mochi to the gods on New Year’s Day, all the way to kagami. Even today, the mochi are cut into pieces at the Biraki and represent “opening”. They are eaten on January 11, and most homes and offices follow this tradition by placing Kagami-Mochi on their Kamidana (a small Shinto altar usually on a shelf over a fall) at New Year. Both types of kagami biraki, breaking up a sake barrel with Shinto blessings and celebrations and cutting kagami mochi, are meant to help ask the gods to provide health and happiness. For example, the New Year or the start of a new start in life or business. For these reasons, Kagami Biraki is becoming an increasingly popular way to host housewarming parties, corporate parties, weddings and other festivities.
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