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Ebisu: this is another of my occasional reminders that there are many different gods worshipped on this strange but wonderful planet we inhabit. Ebisu is a Japanese god in the Shinto tradition. A fat and smiling deity with a beard, he is generally depicted with a fishing rod in one hand and sea bream in the other. He's considered a god of luck and has been worshipped since ancient times, especially by fishermen. More recently, he's become associated with profit and his picture adorns the many commercial premises. Because he's deaf, apparently, he doesn't join the rest of the gods for the October festival held at Izumo, which seems to be another instance of the peculiar prejudices surrounding so many religious figures.