Kanda Myojin Shrine and the anime/manga “Love Live!” version of good luck charms

In Japan, people traditionally go to a shrine or a temple and write their wish (or thanks if a wish came true) on a wooden tablet–called “ema” (Japanese: 絵馬), good luck charm –that has a picture of a horse (or sometimes another animal) on the back, and then hang the tablet at the temple or shrine. People long ago believed that the gods rode horses, and so an ema is a way of asking the gods to come and help.

Now in January of 2015, a young boy aged 22 came to Tokyo from Fukui prefecture and visited the Kanda Myojin shrine. At the shrine he saw this illustration of a character from Love Live! on a good luck charm “ema”. Impressed he sent out the word with a snap on various SNS channels and it became a famous good luck charm to the extent that many youngsters started copycat acts at the Kanda Myojin Shrine.
Ita-ema or anime style good luck charms featuring Love Live! at Kanda MyoujinThe Shrine took note of this and with a company started producing the wooden tablets with the Love Live! character on it now called as ita-ema (Japanese:痛絵馬).

Background about Love Live! : Love Live! (Japanese: ラブライブ!) School Idol Project is a Japanese multimedia project co-developed by ASCII Media Works’ Dengeki G’s Magazine, music label Lantis, and animation studio Sunrise. The project revolves around a group of fictional school girls who become idols in order to save their school from shutting down. It launched in the August 2010 issue of Dengeki G’s Magazine, and went on to produce music CDs, anime music videos, two manga adaptations, and video games.

Now people are very creative and we decided to take some snaps of other wooden tablets depicting some awesome creativity AKIBA style. Here we go.
Beautiful words on the wooden tablet which means, may god make dreams of all come true.
imageA curious tablet with “let me not forget the first love in the new year!?!?!?!”
imageIwate-Yokohama drive and some memories to continue in new year
imageBeautifully hand drawn good luck charm wishing for a great new year 2015. Seriously creative.
imageThe Kanda Myojin shrine is literally exploding with so much creative wooden tablets and drawings
imageSome traditional wooden tablets too in the overall creative AKIBA style tablets showing the sheep’s year drawing on the tablet.
imageThe Kanda Myojin Shrine is not dabbling with the wooden tablets, but they are also making Daikokuten figures!!! (the god enshrined here) So very AKIBA-like. See the advert below.
Kanda Myoujin : Figure of the Daikokuten on saleThe Shrine is so progressive in its thought they are also making the gods into LINE stamps!!!
imageA culture which progresses with time evolves and keeps itself in sync with the times and stays relevant. Only in Japan!


  1. Reply

    Thanks Maria, hope you liked the visit to the Kanda Shrine… Visit in May for their annual festival. Very crowded though

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