This is a short, but curious report on an event that I had the chance to witness in Nagoya, dedicated to a fact related to Nobunaga's youth.
"In 1570, following victory in Echizen, Nobunaga was ambushed and shot while riding along the shore of Lake Biwa. The gunmen had perfect aim, hitting Nobunaga in the chest, however the bullets failed to take his life. The Head Priest of the Oda clan temple, the Banshoji in Nagoya, had given him some mochi, dried rice cakes, as rations, which Nobunaga had stuffed into the front of his kimono. The rice cakes took the bullet saving his life. In 1611, Kato Kiyomasa was lodged at the Banshoji during construction of Nagoya Castle. Hearing the story, he suggested the temple make mochi to be distributed as an amulet to the locals on the 28th of each month. This tradition still continues to this day." Summary from Samurai History and Culture Japan
After this story, its actual name became migawari mochi, meaning the "scapegoat mochi", as in something that acts as a substitute for someone else, and it's still made and distributed on the 28th of every month.
I was lucky to manage to attend one of these events, where I got to take these blurry pictures XD
It was touching to see how many people were in line, and how seriously the protective deeds of this mochi are taken!
I managed to find a video showing the whole mochi making on YouTube, so I'm sharing it with you :3
I was waiting for the karakuri show in front of the temple, but as it was cancelled because of the mochitsuki, the locals (who witnessed my devotion for Nobunaga x'D) forced me to get in line for the lucky mochi, so in the end I managed to get my share of protection ^_^ !
It's been a fun experience! --Now I hope that the blessed mochi would take care of me adequately∼