Setsubun (膀????, seasonal division) is the day before the beginning of each season in Japan.? Especially, Setsubun in spring, the day before Risshun (腴????, the starting day of spring in the old Japanese calander), is celebrated on a massive scale.
The spring Setsubun is on the beginning of February.? It will be on Februari 3rd till 2025, but the day slightly differs by year.
A major event on Setsubun is Mamemaki (莟???障??, bean throwing).? A man (usually the father in a household) performs as an Oni (薔?, demon), and his family throws roasted soybeans at him.? These soybeans are called Fukumame (胼顗?, fortune beans), and after you throw it, you eat the same number of beans as your age.? Beans, or Mame in Japanese, has the same sound?with Mame (薛?羯?, destruction of badness).? Throwing the beans have a meaning to wish for a year of health.? People usually call out “Oni wa soto! Fuku wa uchi! (薔若???????胼??????)” when throwing the beans, means ‘get the demons out, and call the luck in’.
When the season of Setsubun comes close, roasted soybeans as Fukumame (some with a demon mask)?are sold at many supermarkets.? Also, on Setsubun day, many Shrines hold Mamemaki events, where beans are thrown by priests and sometimes by celebrities.