Finding coins – reassurance from Inari?

Haiden_of_Inari_Shrine_in_Suizenji_Joju_Garden

Inari shrine, with a box for offerings at the front

Since I’ve started venerating Inari Okami, I’ve noticed that I’ve started finding dropped change everywhere. It seems I only have to glance down at the pavement and I’ll find one or two pence coins at my feet – sometimes even ten or twenty pence coins. Today, I even found a dropped pound coin!

Since Inari-sama is commonly associated with wealth and business, I sometimes can’t help but wonder if these coins are a blessing or a message from her. Perhaps she’s simply reminding me that she’s here and she’s happy to help if I need it. Or perhaps she’s telling me that money and wealth is there provided I make the effort to seek it out. Or perhaps it’s simply a case that I’m being more attentive to dropped change because I could do with a little more cash!

So what have I been doing with all this money I’ve been finding? I try to offer it back to Inari-sama by putting it in a little money box that acts as a miniature version of the collection boxes usually located outside Shinto shrines where people drop money before praying. Whenever I make a prayer to Inari, or whenever it’s a Sabbat or Esbat, I try to remember to place a little offering in the box (gold coins for Sabbats, silver coins of Esbats, and copper for everything else). Eventually, I plan to donate this money to a good cause once the box is full – either one that’s relevant to current global events, or the Fox Project, a charity that helps sick and injured foxes in the south of England.

Whether finding coins is a gift from Inari-sama, or simply good luck, I will endeavour to use the money for good purposes, and to inspire me to be more ambitious in my everyday life.

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Filed under Shinto / Japanese Religion

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