Friday, February 5, 2021

Yatsushiro Myokensai

 

I arrived at Yatsushiro Shrine in late November on the 44th day of my first walk around Kyushu. A few days earlier was the Yatsushiro Myokensai Festival which originates from the shrine. On display at the shrine are some of the "creatures" that are paraded during the festival.


It is one of the major festivals of Kyushu and one of the 33 festivals that are registered as intangible cultural assets with UNESCO. It features horses predominantly and of course mikoshi and such.


The most unique creature is perhaps the genbu which is kind of a cross between a turtle and a serpent. It is the daoist symbol for the north, and as this is a festival to Myoken, the Buddhist deity associated with the Pole Star and Big Dipper, it is not surprising.


If I had been here a few days earlier I could have seen the festival, but for sure I would not have been abe to get a room.


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