Omamori (Personal Amulet) (お守り)

Omamori (personal amulets) are items that symbolize one's wish. They are believed to have effects such as driving away evil when worn or kept in certain places.


Good Luck Omamori (talisman)

Part of Animals or Animal Shape.

Those that confer the power of an animal such as those consisting of a scarab (dung beetle) or rabbit's foot. Omamori modeled after Shinto and Buddhist deities also belong to this category.
Reference: worship of the dead, totemism

Natural Objects

It is believed that the properties of natural objects such as powerful stones have a good influence on people; for example, wearing amethyst is believed to prevent motion sickness.
Reference: worship of the dead

Symbolic Omamori

Symbols associated with a certain history or story such as a crucifix or Santa Claus were thought to have effects similar to these stories.
Reference: imitative magic

Omamori to Ward off Evil (Amulets)

Omamori Conferred with Magic Power

Omamori on which magic circles or Sanskrit characters are written and are conferred with power by humans. Among the omamori offered at shrines and temples in Japan, those containing a talisman on which characters that represent Shinto and Buddhist deities have been written belong to this category. Gofu, jufu (talismans), and amulets (a charm that is put on the arm). Ema (votive horse tablets) also belong in this category.

Cotton belts with a thousand red stitches that were popular in Japan during World War II can be included in this category, although these are slightly different from magic circles and Sanskrit characters..


Unlike amulets made mainly for magical purposes such as Japanese omamori, there are many accessories and common tools (such as knives) that are thought to have special power because they have been made using special tools, have stones embedded in them, or have magic words written on them. Accessories made of metals such as silver are thought to have special power.

Shinto Shrine Omamori

The omamori provided by the majority of Shinto shrines have ofuda (charms) enclosed. They are made of materials such as paper, wood or cloth. They are often made by special companies, but some shrines including Ise Jingu Shrine make them at their own Ofuda manufacturing department (Hoseijo) within the shrine. The contents of omamori are exorcised and purified, so opening them to discover their "secrets" may negate their effectiveness.

They were originally documents or licenses issued by local shugo and jito (military governors and manor stewards), but they were thought to have a mysterious meaning by the common people of the time who could not read or write, and this meaning has remained until today.

[Original Japanese]