Therefore, the Daruma has no limbs. These dolls do not have pupils, but present a large white circle where the eyes would be. One of the theories behind this design choice relates to the legend that Bodhidharma removed his own eyelids. Another theory is that it comes from the fact that in the past, people who wanted the gods inhabiting the doll to help them achieve their goals vowed to give the Dharma a vision if the gods would help them achieve their goals. The beard and eyebrows on the doll are intended to replicate the facial features of Bodhidharma, but not merely for aesthetic purposes. In fact, the eyebrows are shaped like a crane and the beard is shaped like a turtle. These two animals represent longevity in Japanese culture (as elsewhere in East Asia). In keeping with the Japanese proverb, “”A crane lives a thousand years, a turtle 10,000 years,”” the Daruma was given this shape. Although the Daruma has no legs or arms, the original Daruma was designed not to tip over. Whenever the Daruma is tilted, it always returns to an upright position. The Daruma is a good luck charm, but more importantly, patience. Those who seek help from this deity recognize the importance of sacrifice in the face of adversity.
This implies that no matter how many times they are knocked down, they must always persevere and rise to achieve their goals.Strongly linked to this philosophy and to the Daruma itself is the Japanese word “”Nanakorobi ya oki””, which means that even if you fall down seven times, you will be better when you get up eight times.”