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100 (Nearly) Naked People Plunge Into Freezing Water To Purify Their Souls

All they were wearing were loincloths as they sank into the freezing cold water in the name of cleansing their souls.

The practice of stripping down and submerging oneself in cold water is part of an annual Japanese ceremony now in its 64th year.

The idea is to cleanse the body and the soul and wish for good health and happiness in the new year.

Over 100 participants bathed in the water to purify their souls. Image: Reuters.

About 100 participants gathered at Tokyo's Teppozu Inari Shrine to participate in the event on Sunday. , including 12 women, an 83-year-old man and a nine-year-old boy who came along with his father.

The event was held on a cloudy day where the temperature was a crisp five degrees and the water freezing cold.

Some people held ice block against their bodies. Image: Reuters.

Some participants even held an ice block against their bodies as they bobbed in the water.

Now, that's a fresh start to the new year.

Featured Image: Reuters. 

Contact Siobhan at skenna@networkten.com.au