Protection Jizo Okiagari Roly-poly Doll
Jizo is a representation of Buddha Jizo Bosatsu, one of the most popular in Japan. He is not only the patron saint of travelers but also the protector of children and motherhood. Traditionally the Japanese make him abundant offerings of food. They adorn the statues of Jizo with a wool scarf and hat for him not to be cold and a red bib not to get dirty.
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.