Showing posts with label kotosakano. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kotosakano. Show all posts

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Matsubase Shrine


Matsubase is a small town in Kumamoto that I reached in the afternoon of my 45th day walking around Kyushu. Matsubase Shrine is the main shrine in the centre of town.

Known through most of history as Matsubase Gongen, the shrine now enshrines Izanami, Hayatamao, and Kotosakano.

The gingko trees and a few maple were nice with their color, but the most impressive tree was a giant camphor tree said to be over 800 years old. Camphor trees seem to be the sacred tree of choice at shrines in Kyushu.

Not far from the shrine was the next building in the Kumamoto Artpolis project for me to check out......

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Sada Shrine

Sada Shrine, located north of Matsue, was once the most important shrine in the Izumo region. Enshrined in the central honden are 5 kami, the main one being Sadano Okami, along with Izanagi and Izanami, and the pair Hayatamano and Kotosakano. Izanagi and Izanami are well known, and in Izumo, Hayatamano and Kotosakano, 2 kami associated with the "divorce" of Izanagi and Izanami are also fairly common. Little is known of the main kami though except he is known as the protector of the Shimane Peninsula. He was born in a nearby sea cave called kaganokukedo and some posts on that can be found here.

The right (north) honden enshrines the Imperial kami: Amaterasu, and her grandson Ninigi. The left honden enshrines Susano, and something called Hisetsu Yonchu, which I think means "hidden four poles", about which I can find no information.

Sada Shrine is one of the many shrines where the mass kami of Japan arrive in November during kamiarizuki, though it is widely reported that they all go to Izumo Taisha.

Sada Shrine is also home to the UNESCO registered Sada Shin Noh. a form of Noh-influenced kagura that is believed to have influenced satokagura nationwide.

When I first explored this area many years ago I found it interesting to klearn that the earliest known yayoi site in Izumo was found in this valley indicating perhaps that this is where the proto-Japanese first settled in the region which would explain Sada shrines importance.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Kumano Shrine, Honjo

Honjo is a large village on the north shore of the Nakaumi and the main village shrine was a branch of Kumano Shrine. I think this was the first shrine I had come to in the last 2 days of walking that was not either in the Izumo Fudoki nor the Engi Shiki.

The three main kami are Izanami, Hayatamano, and Kotosakano, though usually it is Izanagi associated with the other two rather than Izanami. The shrine had a small but in good condition mikoshi, fairly simple.

In the grounds was a Tenjin shrine, an Inari shrine, and an small shrine with no name.

The Inari shrine had a lot of small kitsune figures, usually white ceramic or plain stone, but also this pair of golden ones. There was also a small pair of figures, Daikoku and Ebisu.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Serida Shrine

It may look like a small inconspicuous village shrine, but Serida Shrine has some vintage. It is listed in the Izumo Fudoki, so has existed since before the 7th Century, and is also listed in the Engi Shiki, therefore it received offerings from the imperial government in the Heian period.

The main kami enshrined here is listed as Kanayamabiko, who came into existence from the vomit of Izanami as she was dying after giving birth to fire. However, according to an excellent website on the history of iron in Japan at Hitachi Metals, it was probably called Kanayago before the Meiji Period.

Kanayago is a very popular kami among iron and metal workers and the head kanayago shrine is a little east of here. The Chugoku region and especially this part of Izumo was a main center for iron production in ancient times, and there are many Kanayago shrines.

Also enshrined here is Izanami and Kotosakano and Hayatamano, the latter two being the kami that came into existence at the time of Izanagi's oath of divorce from Izanami. Curiously they are linked with Izanami here rather than Izanagi.

This area is between the entrance to Yomi where Izanagi visited Izanami, and Izamani's tomb on top of Mt. Hiba.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Sanja Shrine

Sanja Shrine is right next door to Manpukuji and I came into the shrine from a trail that lead from the temple.
Sanja means " Three kami", and the three enshrined here are Izanagi, Hayatamano, and Kotosakano.

Izanagi is well known but the other two are known only in an alternate version of the myth that has Izanagi visiting his deceased wife Izanami in the underworld, Yomi. When he left Yomi Izanagi swore and oath of divorce from Izanami, he then spat. From the spittle was created Hayatamano who is the main kami of the famous shrine with his name in Kumano.

Also appearing at that time was Kotosakano, full name Yomotsu Kotosakanoo, which means " The man of words of separation of Yomi". I have encountered this triad of kami at other shrines in Izumo and Iwami.

Also enshrined here is Oyamakui, a grandson of Susano through Otoshi, and the main kami of Hie Taisha and Sanno Shinto. There is also an Aragami-sha, pictured above.

This area I am walking through is at the heart of Orochi country, and according to local people following the destruction of Orochi by Susano the people danced a celebration at this spot that later became this shrine.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Noshiro Shrine


After leaving Oda the route of the Iwami 33 Kannon Pilgrimage heads along the Sanbe River towards Mount Sanbe. Just below Sanbe Dam is the small settlement of Noshiro with a small shrine.

I know these posts on obscure local shrines are not particularly popular, but a large part of the reason why I started this blog was to document the thousands of shrines I've visited, so..... As of this writing I have only managed to document 124, an index of which can be found here.


Noshiro has an interesting trio of kami enshrined, the main one being Izanagi, the male half of the pair that created the Japanese islands and its kami. Mythologically speaking Izanagi and Izanami are the most important of the kami, but in the seventh Century, and again in the twentieth Century, the government of Japan elevated the Imperial ancestor Amaterasu to the highest position.


The other 2 kami enshrined here are related to Izanagi, Hayatamano and Kotosakano, 2 kami that appear in the myth of Izanagis visit to see his dead wife Izanami in Yomi. At least that is the Izumo version, and as the myth of Yomi is set in Izumo I would tend towards that version rather than the "national" version that has Hayatamano as another name for Izanami. Part of my interest in visiting small local shrines is for the light they shed on the diversity that existed in Japan before the modern, homogenous, centrally imposed, "national" culture was created.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Suetsugu Shrine


Suetsugu Shrine is located on the shore of Lake Shinji right next to the main bridge coming into Matsue, though as the shrine is listed in the Izumo Fudoki it has probably been in existence for a millenia before Matsue was built.


The two main kami enshrined here are Susano and his "mother" Izanami, and there is also a group of three uncommon kami, Hayatamano, Kotosakano, and Kukurihime, who are all connected to Izanagis visit to see Izanami in the underworld, Yomi.


There are numerous small shrines within the grounds to various aragami including kojin, and also an ebisu shrine.


Right next to the main building is a small shrine that seems particularly popular that I think may be to Benzaiten as there were several small depictions of snakes on the altar.