The first special birthday is kanreki (還暦), which is celebrated when a person is 60 years old. I had heard that the 60th birthday was special in Japanese culture, but I never before knew why. The answer lies in the sexegenary cycle. If you do not know what this is, all you need to know for now is that it is a cycle of 60 years based on yin-yang cosmology. I will explain this cycle in further detail in a future post.
Some other special birthdays are:
古希: 70 years old.
喜寿: 77 years old.
傘寿: 80 years old.
米寿: 88 years old.
卒寿: 90 years old.
白寿: 99 years old.
上寿: 100 years old.
That's all for my first post. Stay tuned!
Ōtani, Mitsuo. Kyūreki De Yomitoku Nihon No Narawashi. Tokyo: Seishun Shuppan-sha, 2003.