The age-old good luck charm of the seven Lucky Gods of Japan brings in great prosperity and good health to all those who believe in them. Among the several interpretations of their origin, a popular one says, deities from India, Japan, and China are counted as lucky gods in this group of seven. Originally, these deities were spotted separately, until the 15th and 17th centuries. Since then, these seven deities are seen to be placed in a group on a treasure ship, the pictures of which adorn houses, restaurants, and workplaces.
The folklore traces back to a belief that on the eve of New Year, these seven lucky gods travel on a treasure ship and pay their visits to the human ports so as to fill the lives of their believers with joy. Following this a bit more is crafted, which says that, children sleeping with the picture of these 7 lucky gods, placed under their pillows, are blessed with good luck and sweet dreams for the rest of the year.
Their treasure boat
The seven lucky gods are often spotted on pictures wherein they seem to have somehow fitted in their treasure boat. According to the folklore, this boat is loaded with happiness and treasure, so when they visit their believers, they shower them with blessings and wealth. In few pictures, you can spot an image of Baku on their sail signifying no more nightmares, as Baku is believed to consume all. Also, you might have noticed pictures of tortoises and cranes by the treasure boat signifying auspicious events to follow.
The 7 Gods
There are 6 gods and 1 goddess in the group of these 7 luck crafters. The goddess is named as Benten, who is a patron of beauty, art, and knowledge. The rest 6 are namely Bishamon, Daikoku, Ebisu, Fukurokuju, Hotei and Jurojin. Here’s a little more about these charming gods, so as to put light on their significance.
This goddess has her origin in the land of India. She is popularly known as Saraswati. This goddess can be spotted with a ‘biwa,’ generally, used for playing with music. Being the goddess of fortune, she is associated with performing arts, music, speech, and knowledge.
This deity also has an Indian origin. Being the protector against evil and health disorders, this god is believed to be spreading treasures of happiness, respect, honour and faith. By the Japanese mythology, this god is also popular as a guardian of the serene Buddhist faith.
The favourite of all, among businessmen and farmers, this god is an epitome of wealth and good fortune. A short figure, smiling face, pointed beard, flat hat and a big fat sack – it is said that his sack is loaded with wealth and treasures. Also, he protects you from demons, chasing them far away.
This Japanese God had a thing for fishing, and so, is spotted with one among the seven gods. He is the god of fair deals, fortune, and wealth. In order to please him, the business people organize for a yearly sale and are fair in the discounts they allow.
Generally, accompanied by a deer, tortoise, snork or a snake, this god is the epitome of longevity. It is believed that he is bestowed with the power of reviving death. Besides longevity, he also blesses you with riches and happiness.
You will always be able to identify this ever-smiling God, with an inflated tummy. He is generous of them all and blesses one with abundance if he is honoured.
Wisest of them all, this God bestows you with all the wisdom of life. Accompanied by a deer, he carries a scroll with all the wisdom and a record of your deeds written in it.
So, bring home these seven lucky gods and get ready to enjoy the good fortune spread by this good luck charm, at the earliest!