Friday, December 29, 2023

Kashima Shrine Minabe


I came into Minabe at the end of a rainy fifth day of my walk. I was on the Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage, claimed to be the oldest of the major pilgrimage circuits of Japan. For this first week, the route also followed the Kumano Kodo, though in reverse. This was the Kiiji section which runs from Tanabe up to Osaka and Kyoto.

The main shrine was a Kashima Shrine, with numerous secondary shrines and a small Inari shrine at the entrance.

According to te shrine history it is a branch of the famous Kashima Shrine up country, brought here in the early Nara Period.

However, it was located on a tiny uninhabited island just offshore and was known as Kashima Myojin.

During the Meiji Period, possibly 1909, the kami was transferred to the land and the shrine built, which explains the somewhat "meiji" feel of the shrine.

The main kami is Takemikazuchi, although Amaterasu and Susano are also listed. That may be a Meiji addition.

In the grounds are a Tenjin, Ebisu, another Inari, and a couple of other shrines.

The previous post in this series was Kozanji Temple in Tanabe.


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