Japanese Worship for The Rising Sun
Why does Japan call itself the country of the rising sun? Japanese people certainly have a special sentiment to the sun. The sunrise on the first day of the New Year is known as Hatsuhinode (初日の出), which remains as the important thing for Japanese to see. Last year, I was in the bay area of Tokyo seeing the Hatsuhinode. Usually, many people gather at locations known for their beautiful sunrises, such as on the beach or in the mountains.
In former times, it is also noted that farmers offered prayers of gratitude and worship to the sun. What about today?
Here they celebrate the arrival of the New Year with the rising sun and pray for good health throughout the year.
They no longer seem to worship the sun. To my eyes, they gather just to see the beautiful sunrise with friends, a boy friend or a girl friend, or family to share the impressive event.
Still it remains as the special event in Japanese custom.