Yakuoji: Temple 23 of Pilgrimage

Escape misfortune by dropping coins on these stairs

By Naoko Takeuchi    - 1 min read

Yakuoji is No.23 Temple of Shikoku Pilgrimage and known as a temple for escaping misfortune.

This temple is located on the side of a mountain and has stone stairs named “Yaku-Zaka”. The number of the steps of the stone stairs is the same as the number of “Yaku-Doshi” which is the years in one's life that are unlucky. That is 42 for man and 33 for woman.

People come to this temple with many coins and drop them on each step of the stone stairs, like how they dropped the bread in “Hansel and Gretel”.

I am now 32 years old (33 years old according to the East Asian age reckoning) and this year is “Yaku-Doshi” for woman. So, I too dropped coins on “Yaku-Zaka” to escape misfortune and prayed for health and happiness.

Also: If you do not want to be unlucky, do not pick up any of coins on the stone stairs!

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Naoko Takeuchi

Naoko Takeuchi @naoko.takeuchi

I was born in Oita prefecture, Kyushu, and grew up in Tokushima prefecture, Shikoku. My sister gave me my first camera and I have been taking pictures since then. Photographs have the power to tell stories, remind us of precious experiences, and motivate people to act. That’s why I love photography. Now, I’m living in Tokushima prefecture and would like to introduce the wonderful culture of Tokushima through all of my photographs.