If you want a Japanese decoration that attracts attention, that has a fascinating history, that is based on several urban legends, you should definitely consider acquiring a statue of maneki neko. These adorable cat figurines that wave to us are an ancient symbol of Japanese culture!
Just like the daruma statuette or the omamori talisman, the maneki neko brings good luck and attracts good fortune!
1. LEGEND OF MANEKI NEKO
Legend tells us that a cat was lathing outside the door of a Shinto shrine when he saw a samurai. The Japanese warrior was sheltering under a tree because the storm was raging. He saw the cat that he said waved to approach. When he left his shelter, a flash of lightning cut the tree in half!
To thank the cat, he financed the temple so that the monk who lived there and his cat would not miss anything. The daimyo (samurai leader), made the temple a spiritual and resting place for his family. The shrine later became Gotokuji Temple!
A Maneki neko statue was built with the image of the cat and this is how according to this Japanese folklore the maneki neko cat turned into a symbol of luck. The left leg that moves is a reference to this Japanese legend!
2. GOTOKUJI TEMPLE
As we have seen, Maneki Neko originates from Gotokuji Temple , at least if we follow the legend above. Although it is unlikely that a cat will wave to people wandering near Gotokuji Temple, the temple is a popular place.
Even today, there are shelves filled to the brim with Maneki Neko figures . Gotokuji is the place of origin of the history of Maneki Neko. The sizes of the maneki neko statuettes are different as well as the materials used. There are porcelain maneki neko , wooden maneki neko etc... Gotokuji Shrine is a popular place for tourism!
3. ORIGIN OF MANEKI NEKO
While many agree that the samurai traveler is the original story of Maneki Neko, some believe that he is actually from China.
However, even if this cute little cat is popular in China and especially through the feng shui movement in China, its origin is indeed Japanese.
4. MEANING PAW MANEKI NEKO
There are three different gestures for Maneki neko. Here is their meaning:
Meaning left paw raised
A Maneki Neko waving his left paw invites people to enter the building he is sitting next to.
Meaning right paw raised
It is said that the Maneki Neko that beckons his right paw brings money and good fortune, usually in a commercial sense.
Meaning Two Legs Raised
A Japanese cat statuette with both legs raised is a combination of the two mentioned above. This lucky cat invites people/customers to enter and it is said that it also brings money and good fortune.
6. COLOUR MANEKI NEKO
The Maneki Neko comes in several colors, each with its own meaning.
Maneki Neko tricolor
The most common is the tricolor cat. It is said that the tricolor Maneki Neko brings luck to its owner because it is modeled on the Japanese short-tailed cat: the bobtail.
Maneki Neko white
The all-white Maneki Neko is supposed to bring its owner happiness and purity.
Maneki Neko gold
If you get a gold Maneki Neko, it will bring you great wealth.
Maneki Neko red
The red Maneki Neko cat keeps the disease away, especially in children. This is also the case for the red Daruma lucky charm!
Pink Maneki Neko
It is ideal for those with a sense of romance because this cat is supposed to bring love into your life.
Maneki Neko green
Green Maneki Neko should probably be distributed during the first week of college because it is supposed to bring prosperity to your studies.
Maneki Neko black
Perhaps the most fascinating of all colors is the black Maneki Neko. While black cats in Western culture are seen as a symbol of bad luck, the black Maneki Neko figure is supposed to keep stalkers and evil away in general.
7. THE ATTRIBUTES OF MANEKI NEKO
The Maneki Neko is usually adorned with a bib, collar or bell. It is a sign of wealth that dates back to the Edo period, when families dressed their cats to show their economic status. While one leg beckons to those who pass the Maneki Neko, the other usually holds something and each of the things that the Maneki Neko holds represents something slightly different Maneki
Neko with a koban
If the Maneki Neko grabs a koban , which is a coin from the Edo period, it is supposed to represent the wealth that is brought to the owner of the Maneki Neko.
Maneki Neko Koi Carp
Some cats hold a fish, it is also a sign of good fortune. Koi carp is a symbol of strength in Japanese folklore!
Maneki Neko Mallet
If you see a Maneki Neko with a small hammer, know that it is a magic mallet. It brings richette when it is shaken!
Maneki Neko with the magic ball
Sometimes you can see the Maneki Neko holding a small ball or a precious stone. It is believed to be a magic ball that brings wisdom to its owner.
Maneki Neko with a water bottle
If your Maneki Neko is holding a bottle, it's supposed to keep evil spirits away. 8. Japanese party dedicated to this cat!
9. OR POSITION THE LUCKY CAT?
Do you know that placing your cat is important to get the most out of it? Here's everything you need to know to have as much luck as possible.
At work, it must be placed near a public entrance. It must be seen as much as possible... If that's not possible, put it north-west of your office.
Also know that the positioning of your lucky holder is not the same depending on the color of the cats. Here are all our tips!
Golden Maneki Neko : If you have a gold Maneki Neko and want prosperity for your children or have increased creativity, put the cat in the western corner.
Black Maneki Neko : If you want a healthier one, place a black Maneki Neko in the eastern part of the house.Pink or red
Maneki Neko: the pink or red Maneki Neko can improve your romantic relationship if you place it in the southwestern part of the house. It will bring success or glory if placed in the south corner of the house or apartment!
Green Maneki Neko : Romance, education, travel and writing will be made easier if the green Maneki Neko is placed in the southern or southeastern part of the house.White
Maneki Neko: the white Maneki Neko can also be placed in the northwestern part of the house to promote your travel desires!
So choose wisely the location of your Japanese lucky charm Maneki Neko.