Saturday, September 1, 2012

Karinomiya Shrine

The second temple on the Izumo 33 Kannon Pilgrimage is close to the first so on my way I took a short cut through the back roads to visit a shrine I had not yet been to.  Fairly unpreposing, karinomiya (or kaminomiya) shrine looks like many other small village shrines, but is in fact quite unique. It is a sessha of Izumo Taisha and two names are listed as enshrined kami, Susano and Yaoyorozu. Yaoyorozu literally means 8 million kami, and is the word used to collectively describe all the kami of shinto, and they inhabit this shrine once a year during kamiarizuki, the time when all the kami meet up in Izumo. They hold a conference here in the early days of kamiarizuki. Why Susano is listed seperately is a mystery, though an interesting one. This area of Izumo is certainly Susano country, and records conveniently ignored by most say that Susano is the original kami of Izumo taisha.

Across the road is a massha of the shrine, named "lower" shrine. It enshrines Amaterasu. If this shrine was established in fairly modern times I would not be in the least surprised.


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