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Kuzuryū

Kuzuryū, or Kuzuryūshin is a deity that appears in folklore and legends of various parts of Japan, for example, Nagano Prefecture and Fukui Prefecture. In many cases, the Kuzuryū is associated with water. During the Nara period, a legend arose that the Nine-headed Dragon had settled in Lake Ashi in Hakone, that it demanded a sacrifice. To appease the dragon, the villagers agreed to select a house by shooting a white-feathered arrow and seeing where it landed sacrificing the daughter of the house. A priest named Mankan cursed the dragon, is said to have chained it to the Upside-down Cedar; as a result of this legend, the dragon came to be worshipped as Kuzuryū Daimyōjin. The expression "send up a white-feathered arrow" has come to mean "choose by lot." The legend continues, saying Mankan saw the dragon change into a Dragon King. He built a shrine to the dragon. After this the customary offering to the dragon changed from human sacrifice to steamed rice with red beans. Kuzuryū is said to have appeared in response to the echoing sound of a rock door to a cave torn off by another god, flung down to earth.

The thrown door became Mount Togakushi, Kuzuryū became a nearby mountain of the same name. At the foot of Mount Togakushi resides Togakushi Shrine, where a small shrine dedicated to the Kuzuryū can be found. Kuzuryū's origins can be tracted to the Buddhist deities Vāsuki and Śeṣa, Nāgarajas who guard Mount Meru. According to Hindu myth, Śeṣa was one of one thousand nāga offspring of Kaśyapa and Kadrū, his appearance is that of a giant snake with one thousand heads. The earrings and corolla attached to each one of one thousand heads depict are decorated with swastikas; when Buddhism was introduced to China, Vāsuki was recognized as one of the Eight Great Nāga Kings. In Japan, due to the influence of Shintō on Buddhism, Vāsuki became a guardian deity in both religions; the Eight Nāga Kings became influential in the esotertic tradition, which has a strong focus on obtaining worldly benefits. This was reflected in Kuzuryū's role as a rainmaker deity. Kuzuryū is sometimes referred to as Kuzuryū Gongen.

Lake Ashi Lernaean Hydra Nagaraja Shesha Vasuki Hakone jinja, aka Kuzuryu jinja

Shawn Chacón

Shawn Anthony Chacón is an American retired professional baseball pitcher. He last played in Major League Baseball with the Houston Astros in 2008. During his career, he threw an 88–92 mph sinker, a big curveball, a slider, a changeup. Chacón was born in Anchorage, but has only dim recollection of his biological mother and none of his father, his mother placed him in a Greeley, foster home when he was aged four, he was adopted by Tony and Blanca Chacón. Chacón was recruited by Arizona State, but chose to play professionally after he was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the third round of the 1996 amateur draft, he signed on June 18, 1996. Chacón made his MLB debut in 2001 as a member of the Rockies. In his first start, Chacon allowed seven runs in 5 1/3 innings while striking out eight en route to a 14-7 win. By the end of the 2001 season, Chacón recorded a record of 6-10 for the Rockies. In 2002, Chacón battled inconsistency and injuries throughout the season, he pitched in 13 starts in the first half, going 3-6 while having a stint on the DL.

Once he returned, his season took a turn for the worse. In the second half he amassed an ERA of 7.00 in eight starts and was demoted to AAA. Chacón never was recalled back to the majors and finished the season with a record of 5-11 while walking 60 batters in 119 innings. Chacón was Colorado's 2003 All-Star representative, he never got to pitch in the All-Star game due to a nagging elbow injury. He returned after the All-Star break and was winless in six starts, going 0-4. Chacon was shut down for the rest of the season, he wound up finishing 11–8 with a 4.60 ERA. The next year, due to a necessity at the closer role, he was converted into the Rockies closer for the 2004 season. Chacón put up one of the most bizarre stat lines in baseball history for a closer. Chacón was ninth in the National League with 35 saves but was tied with a league leading nine blown saves, his record was 1–9 and his ERA 7.11. His home/road splits were odder, as he was 1-5 at home with a 6.81 ERA and 20 saves. He allowed more hits than innings pitched, while on the road his ERA was worse, standing at 7.56 and notching only 15 saves.

In 2005, Chacón was 1-7 with a career low 4.09 through 13 games before being traded mid season to the Yankees, ending his five-year tenure with the Rockies. A few months prior to the trade, Chacon told a sports reporter that nobody wanted to pitch at high altitude Coors Field because the ball would not curve in the light air. After Chacon went to the Yankees, Rockies manager Hurdle said that a player unhappy with the Rockies would leave quickly, he finished. He was acquired by the Yankees in July 2005 for minor league pitchers Ramón Ramírez and Eduardo Sierra. Many New York fans and members of the tough New York media criticized the trade, calling it a bandage and not a solution, much like how the Yankees saw starts from Tim Redding, Darrell May and Sean Henn in 2005. Chacón was excited to be coming to New York, he did not waver under the initial pressure and criticism. In his first start as a Yankee, he pitched six innings without allowing an earned run against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

He finished 7–3 with a 2.85 ERA for the Yankees. Chacón made his postseason debut in Game 4 of the 2005 American League Division Series against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, he allowed just 2 runs in a Yankee win. Before the 2006 season, sportswriters thought. Chacón, got off to a slow start, but started pitching well in late April. On May 16, the Texas Rangers scored 7 runs off Chacón. After the terrible start, Chacón went on the 15-day disabled list. Chacón came off the DL on June 11. After coming off the DL, Chacón could not pitch 5 innings, forcing the Yankees to use their tired bullpen. On July 6, Chacón was sent to the bullpen after giving up seven runs in 1⅓ innings against the Cleveland Indians on July 4, he was replaced in the rotation by Kris Wilson. During the July 31, 2006, mid-season non-waiver trade deadline, Chacon was dealt for Craig Wilson. Chacón started for the Pirates, making nine starts and going 2–3 with a 5.48 ERA. In 2007, Chacón was used as a reliever by the Pirates, but made four starts.

He went 5–4 with a 3.94 ERA in 64 games for the Pirates in 2007. Chacón was granted free agency after the season. On February 20, 2008, Chacón signed a one-year deal with the Houston Astros worth $2 million. On May 16, Chacón set a major league record by recording 9 consecutive no-decisions to begin a season. On June 25, 2008, the Astros announced that Chacón was suspended indefinitely for insubordination after a physical altercation with Astros General Manager Ed Wade; the incident began after Chacón refused to leave the team dining room to speak with Wade in his office. Chacón claimed that Wade raised his voice and verbally attacked him, telling him to "look in the mirror", though Wade has denied raising his voice or verbally attacking Chacón. In a fit of rage Chacón threw him to the ground; when Wade tried to get up Chacón knocked him back down before other players could intervene to stop the assault. On whether he regretted the incident Chacón stated "If there's any regret, I just wish they had just let me alone".

Wade was not injured by the assault. The next day, Chacón was placed on waivers by the Astros and after clearing waivers, his contract was terminated with