Beckoning cat Maneki Neko Okiagari Roly-poly Doll
In Japan it is very common to see Maneki Neko (also called lucky cat) in many establishment or houses as it is believed to attract prosperity, happiness, success or money. From his neck hangs a small rattle that chases away evil spirits and with its leg holds a gold coin, symbol of fortune and prosperity. With the other paw, the cat waves. Greeting with the left paw will increase visits to our business. Greeting with the right paw attracts money and prosperity to our business.
Okiagari-koboshi means literally “getting-up little priest”. It’s a traditional Japanese roly-poly doll made from papier-mâché and designed so that its weight causes it to return to an upright position when knocked over. Okiagari-koboshi have been part of Japanese children’s toys for a very long time; they were already mentioned in documents from the XIVth century. During the Tokaichi festival, also called the Tenth Day Market, people throw several roly-poly dolls down at the same time and the ones that stand back up are considered good-luck charms.
Okiagari-koboshi is a symbol of perseverance and resilience in times of adversity. Just like this Japanese saying: “Fall seven times, stand up eight”. According to tradition, one okiagari-koboshi should be given as a present to each member of the family plus one extra in the hope that the family will grow over the following year.