Ichinomiya is a historical term referring to the Japanese Shinto shrines with the highest shrine rank in a province or prefecture. Most of the old provinces of Japan had one or more ichinomiya, which gave rise to place names, such as the city of Ichinomiya, Aichi. Shrines of the lower rank are called ninomiya, shinomiya, so forth. Ichinomiya developed from the system of ranking of shrines within a province. List of Shinto shrines Modern system of ranked Shinto Shrines Twenty-Two Shrines Sannomiya Kokubunji Fuchū National Association of Ichinomiya
Tsukuyomi-no-mikoto or Tsukuyomi, is the moon god in Shinto and Japanese mythology. The -no-mikoto ending is a common honorific suffix for the names of gods, of similar meaning to "the grand, the great, the exalted"; the name "Tsukuyomi" is a compound of yomi. The Nihon Shoki mentions this name spelled as Tsukuyumi, but this yumi is a variation in pronunciation of yomi. An alternate interpretation is that his name is a combination of mi. "Yomi" may refer to the Japanese underworld, though this interpretation is unlikely. Unlike the myths of ancient Greece or Rome, the Japanese moon deity is male; this is clear in the earliest mentions in sources such as the Kojiki and the Man'yōshū, where Tsukuyomi's name is sometimes rendered as Tsukuyomi Otoko or as Tsukihito Otoko. Tsukuyomi was the second of the "three noble children" born when Izanagi-no-Mikoto, the god who created the first land of Onogoro-shima, was cleansing himself of his sins while bathing after escaping the underworld and the clutches of his enraged dead wife, Izanami-no-Mikoto.
Tsukuyomi was born. However, in an alternate story, Tsukuyomi was born from a mirror made of white copper in Izanagi's right hand. After climbing a celestial ladder, Tsukuyomi lived in the heavens known as Takamagahara, with his sister Amaterasu Ōmikami, the sun goddess, who later became his wife. Tsukuyomi angered Amaterasu when he killed the goddess of food. Amaterasu once sent Tsukuyomi to represent her at a feast presented by Uke Mochi; the goddess created the food by turning to the ocean and spitting out a fish facing a forest and spitting out game, turning to a rice paddy and coughing up a bowl of rice. Tsukuyomi was utterly disgusted by the fact that, although it looked exquisite, the meal was made in a disgusting manner, so he killed her. Soon, Amaterasu learned what happened and she was so angry that she refused to look at Tsukuyomi again, forever moving to another part of the sky; this is the reason that night are never together. In versions of this story, Uke Mochi is killed by Susanoo instead.
Media related to Tsukuyomi-no-Mikoto at Wikimedia Commons
Inari Ōkami is the Japanese kami of foxes, of fertility, rice and sake, of agriculture and industry, of general prosperity and worldly success, one of the principal kami of Shinto. In earlier Japan, Inari was the patron of swordsmiths and merchants. Represented as male, female, or androgynous, Inari is sometimes seen as a collective of three or five individual kami. Inari appears to have been worshipped since the founding of a shrine at Inari Mountain in 711 AD, although some scholars believe that worship started in the late 5th century. By the 16th century Inari had become the patron of blacksmiths and the protector of warriors, worship of Inari spread across Japan in the Edo period. Inari is a popular figure in both Buddhist beliefs in Japan. More than one-third of the Shinto shrines in Japan are dedicated to Inari. Modern corporations, such as cosmetic company Shiseido, continue to revere Inari as a patron kami, with shrines atop their corporate headquarters. Inari's foxes, or kitsune, act as their messengers.
Inari has been depicted both as female. The most popular representations of Inari, according to scholar Karen Ann Smyers, are a young female food goddess, an old man carrying rice, an androgynous bodhisattva. No one view is correct; because of their close association with kitsune, Inari is believed to be a fox. Inari appears in the form of a snake or dragon, one folktale has Inari appear to a wicked man in the shape of a monstrous spider as a way of teaching him a lesson. Inari is sometimes identified with other mythological figures; some scholars suggest that Inari is the figure known in classical Japanese mythology as Uka-no-Mitama or Uke Mochi. Some take Inari to be identical to any grain kami. Inari's female aspect is identified or conflated with Dakiniten, a Buddhist deity, a Japanese transformation of the Indian dakini, or with Benzaiten of the Seven Lucky Gods. Dakiniten is portrayed as a androgynous bodhisattva riding a flying white fox. Inari's association with Buddhism may have begun in the 8th century, when Shingon Buddhist monk and founder, Kūkai, took over administration of the temple of Tōji, chose Inari as a protector of the temple.
Thus, Inari is still associated with Shingon Buddhism to this day. Inari is venerated as a collective of three deities. However, the identification of these kami has varied over time. According to records of Fushimi Inari, the oldest and most prominent Inari shrine, these kami have included Izanagi, Izanami and Wakumusubi, in addition to the food deities mentioned; the five kami today identified with Inari at Fushimi Inari are Ukanomitama, Omiyanome and Shi. However, at Takekoma Inari, the second-oldest Inari shrine in Japan, the three enshrined deities are Ukanomitama and Wakumusubi. According to the Nijūni shaki, the three kami are Ōmiyame no mikoto Ukanomitama no mikoto and Sarutahiko no mikami The fox and the wish-fulfilling jewel are prominent symbols of Inari. Other common elements in depictions of Inari, sometimes of their kitsune, include a sickle, a sheaf or sack of rice, a sword. Another belonging was their whip—although they were hardly known to use it, it was a powerful weapon, used to burn people's crops of rice.
The origin of Inari worship is not clear. The first recorded use of the present-day kanji of Inari's name, which mean "carrying rice", was in the Ruijū Kokushi in 892 AD. Other sets of kanji with the same phonetic readings, most of which contained a reference to rice, were in use earlier, most scholars agree that the name Inari is derived from ine-nari; the worship of Inari is known to have existed as of 711 AD, the official founding date of the shrine at Inari Mountain in Fushimi, Kyoto. Scholars such as Kazuo Higo believe; the name Inari does not appear in classical Japanese mythology. By the Heian period, Inari worship began to spread. In 823 AD, after Emperor Saga presented the Tō-ji temple to Kūkai, the founder of the Shingon Buddhist sect, the latter designated Inari as its resident protector kami. In 827, the court granted Inari the lower fifth rank, which further increased the deity's popularity in the capital. Inari's rank was subsequently increased, by 942, Emperor Suzaku granted Inari the top rank in thanks for overcoming rebellions.
At this time, the Fushimi Inari-taisha shrine was among the twenty-two shrines chosen by the court to receive imperial patronage, a high honor. The second Inari shrine, Takekoma Inari, was established in the late ninth century. Inari's popularity continued to grow; the Fushimi shrine a popular pilgrimage site, gained wide renown when it became an imperial pilgrimage site in 1072. By 1338, the shrine's festival was said to rival the Gion Festival in splendor. In 1468, during the Ōnin War, the entire Fushimi shrine complex was burned. Rebuilding took about thirty years. While the old complex had enshrined three kami in separate buildings, the new one enshrined five kami in a single building; the new shrine included a Buddhist temple building for the first time, the her
Modern system of ranked Shinto shrines
The modern system of ranked Shinto shrines was an organizational aspect of the establishment of Japanese State Shinto. This system classified Shinto shrines as "other" shrines; the official shrines were divided into Imperial shrines, which are parsed into minor, medium, or major sub-categories. Some shrines are the "first shrines" called ichinomiya that have the highest rank in their respective provinces of Japan; the Ise Grand Shrine stood at the top of all shrines and thus was outside the classification. In 1871, an Imperial decree established a hierarchic ranking of Shinto shrines; these rankings were set aside in 1946, when such rankings were deemed "State Shinto" by the Occupation Shinto Directive. The Jinja Honcho has a different List of Special Shrines. In 1871, the Kanpei-sha identified the hierarchy of government-supported shrines most associated with the imperial family; the kampeisha were shrines venerated by the imperial family. This category encompasses those sanctuaries enshrining emperors, imperial family members, or meritorious retainers of the Imperial family.
The most ranked Imperial shrines or Kanpei-taisha encompassed 67 sanctuaries. The mid-range of ranked Imperial shrines or Kanpei-chūsha included 23 sanctuaries; the lowest ranked among the Imperial shrines or Kanpei-shōsha were five sanctuaries. In addition to the ranked Imperial shrines, there were other shrines at which the kami of emperors were venerated; the Kokuhei-sha identified the hierarchy of government-supported shrines with national significance. The kokuheisha enshrined kami considered beneficial to more local areas; the most ranked, nationally significant shrines or Kokuhei Taisha were six sanctuaries. The mid-range of ranked, nationally significant shrines or Kokuhei Chūsha encompassed 47 sanctuaries; the lowest ranked, nationally significant shrines or Kokuhei Shōsha includes 50 sanctuaries. List of Shinto shrines Twenty-Two Shrines Setsumatsusha
Japanese festivals are traditional festive occasions. Some festivals have their roots in Chinese festivals centuries ago, but have undergone great changes as they mixed with local customs; some are so different that they do not remotely resemble the original festival despite sharing the same name and date. There are various local festivals that are unknown outside a given prefecture. Unlike most people in East Asia, Japanese people do not celebrate Lunar New Year. In Yokohama Chinatown, Japan's biggest Chinatown, tourists from all over Japan come to enjoy the festival. Similar for Nagasaki's Lantern Festival, based in Nagasaki Chinatown. See: Japanese New Year. Festivals are based around one event, with food stalls and carnival games to keep people entertained; some are based around temples or shrines, others hanabi, still others around contests where the participants sport loin cloths. Matsuri is the Japanese word for a holiday. In Japan, festivals are sponsored by a local shrine or temple, though they can be secular.
There are no specific matsuri days for all of Japan. Every locale has at least one matsuri in late summer/early autumn related to the rice harvest. Notable matsuri feature processions which may include elaborate floats. Preparation for these processions is organized at the level of neighborhoods, or machi. Prior to these, the local kami may be paraded through the streets. One can always find in the vicinity of a matsuri booths selling souvenirs and food such as takoyaki, games, such as Goldfish scooping. Karaoke contests, sumo matches, other forms of entertainment are organized in conjunction with matsuri. If the festival is next to a lake, renting a boat is an attraction. Favorite elements of the most popular matsuri, such as the Nada no Kenka Matsuri of Himeji or the Neputa Matsuri of Hirosaki, are broadcast on television for the entire nation to enjoy. Sapporo Snow Festival is one of the largest festivals of the year in Sapporo, held in February for one week, it began in 1950. The event is now large and commercialized.
About a dozen large sculptures are built for the festival along with around 100 smaller snow and ice sculptures. Several concerts and other events are held. Lake Shikotsu is the northernmost ice-free lake, 363 meters deep; this festival features a moss-covered cave, which has evergreen draped on the inside and is covered in ice. This festival is held from late January to mid February; this festival features ice sculptures and large. At night the sculptures are illuminated by different colored lights. There is a fireworks show during the festival as well. Admission is free. Amasake is available for purchase to enjoy; this lake festival is held in the beginning of February. Held in the town of Yasumiya, this festival is on the south side of Lake Towada; this festival is open all day, but at 5 pm one can enjoy activities such as going through a snow maze, exploring a Japanese igloo, eat foods from Aomori and Akita prefectures. There is events held on an ice stage; this festival is held annually and features colorful lantern floats called nebuta which are pulled through the streets of Central Aomori.
This festival is held from about August 2–7 every year. This event attracts millions of visitors. During this festival, 20 large nebuta floats are paraded through the streets near Aomori JR rail station; these floats are constructed of wooden bases and metal frames. Japanese papers, called washi, are painted onto the frames; these amazing floats are finished off with the historical figures or kabuki being painted on the paper. These floats can take up to a year to complete. There is a dance portion of this festival. There are haneto dancers and they wear special costumes for this dance. Everyone is welcome to purchase their own haneto costume; this event is held every year. Thousands of artists from all over Tohoku and further regions come to Nango to perform; this is the largest open-air jazz concert held in Tohoku region. This festival began in a small venue indoors. There was such a large response from the fans. One must purchase tickets for this event; this summer jazz festival doesn't cost anything but potential members of the public still need to receive a ticket to enter the event.
Japan celebrates the entire season of the cherry blossoms. There are festivals in nearly every region of Japan, some locations, food is available or a park may be decorated with lanterns; some locations of cherry blossom festivals include: Yaedake Cherry Blossom Festival in Okinawa. This festival takes place from late January – mid February Matsuyama Shiroyama Koen Cherry Blossom Festival in Matsuyama-city, Ehime; this festival takes place early April. Matsue Jozan Koen Festival in Matsue-city, Shimane; this festival has a feature of illuminating the cherry blossom trees at night. This festival takes place late March-early April. Tsuyama Kakuzan Koen Cherry Blossom Festival in Tsuyama-cit
Sarutahiko Ōkami, is the leader of the earthly kami, deity of the Japanese religion of Shinto. Norito mentions him with the title Daimyōjin instead of Ōkami. Sarutahiko Ōkami is seen as a symbol of Misogi and guidance, why he is the patron of martial arts such as aikido, he enshrined at Tsubaki Grand Shrine in Mie Prefecture, first among the 2000 shrines of Sarutahiko Ōkami, Sarutahiko Jinja in Ise, Mie and Ōasahiko Shrine in Tokushima Prefecture. In the Nihon Shoki, he is the one who greets Ninigi-no-Mikoto, the grandson of Amaterasu, the Sun goddess, when he descends from Takama-ga-hara, he is depicted as a towering man with a large beard, jeweled spear, ruddy face, long nose. At first he is unwilling to yield his realm until persuaded by Ame-no-Uzume-no-Mikoto, the kami of dance and the arts, whom he marries, his Paredros and children created the Sarume no Kimi clan along with an order of female court and religious dancers. It was the origin of Noh. Other descendants includes the Ujitoko clan from Ise province.
According to Kojiki, he went in Ise where a giant clam trapped his hand on Isuzu river at Azaka, thus he drowned. But strangely, Sarutahiko was considered by Ueshiba Morihei as a kind of god of the cosmic life: the god of Aiki. According to O-Senseï, the practice of Aikidō was practice of Misogi purification itself... which doesn't fit well this Kojiki story of Sarutahiko's death. Sarutahiko's name consists of an etymologically obscure element, traditionally transcribed with kanji that suggest the meaning "monkey-field" as a sort of double entendre, followed by the Classical Japanese noun hiko "a male child of noble blood, a prince." Thus, Sarutahiko Ōkami's embellished name could be translated into English as "Great God, Prince Saruta." Many variant pronunciations of his name exist, including Sadahiko. Although it is not written, the Japanese genitive case marker, -no, is suffixed to his name in speech when it is followed by one of his honorific titles, such as Ōkami or Mikoto. Anthropologist Emiko Ohnuki-Tierney lists three factors that identify Sarutahiko as a monkey deity: saru means "monkey", his features "include red buttocks, which are a prominent characteristic of Japanese macaques", as macaques gather shellfish at low tide, the Kojiki says his hand got caught in a shell while fishing and "a monkey with one hand caught in a shell is a frequent theme of Japanese folktales".
Sarutahiko has the distinction of being one of only seven kami to be honored with the title Ōkami or "Great Kami". Sarutahiko and Inari appear to be the only Okami from the kunitsukami, or earthly kami, the others being Amatsukami. Although there is some other Daimyōjin and Daigongen, most of them appeared latter in the History of Japanese Religion, such as Hachiman or Hindu deities, the meaning of Daimyōjin appear to be a little different from Ōkami, the latter being more ancient; the name of this deity appears incorrectly spelled as "Sarundasico" in Puccini's opera Madama Butterfly. Shirahige Jinja Tsubaki Grand Shrine
Kojiki sometimes read as Furukotofumi, is the oldest extant chronicle in Japan, dating from the early 8th century and composed by Ō no Yasumaro at the request of Empress Genmei. The Kojiki is a collection of myths, early legends, genealogies, oral traditions and semi-historical accounts down to 641 concerning the origin of the Japanese archipelago, the Kami; the myths contained in the Kojiki as well as the Nihon Shoki are part of the inspiration behind many practices. The myths were re-appropriated for Shinto practices such as the misogi purification ritual. Emperor Tenmu ordered Hieda no Are to memorize stories and texts from history, many of which appear to have been, until the creation of the Kojiki known oral traditions. Beyond this memorization, nothing occurred until after Empress Jitō and Emperor Monmu had both passed and Empress Genmei came to reign. According to the Kojiki, Empress Genmei on the 18th of the 9th month of 711 ordered the courtier Ō no Yasumaro to record what had been learned by Hieda no Are.
He finished and presented his work to Empress Genmei on the 28th of the 1st month of 712. The Kojiki could be made to further the Imperial right to rule; this historical narrative is broken into the Age of Gods and the Age of Humans, wherein the mythology of the gods which gave birth to the land is told and transitioned in a chronological fashion to the reign of the Emperors. This narrative sets forth the divine mandate by which the Yamato line has right to rule, through the rhetoric used in the Age of Humans, the historical and military qualifications were established. Several of the narratives which give support to the imperial line, such as the subjugation of certain Korean kingdoms, have been confirmed as false and were included to erase failures and bolster reputations of Emperors past. Vast amounts of the Age of Humans is spent recounting genealogies, which served not only to give age to the imperial family, much newer than the Kojiki claims as little evidence has been found to support the existence of early Emperors, but served to tie, whether true or not, many existing clan's genealogies to their own.
Regardless of the original intent of the Kojiki, it finalized and even formulated the framework by which Japanese history was examined in terms of the reign of Emperors. The Kojiki contains various poems. While the historical records and myths are written in a form of Chinese with a heavy mixture of Japanese elements, the songs are written with Chinese characters, though only used phonetically; this special use of Chinese characters is called Man'yōgana, a knowledge of, critical to understanding these songs, which are written in Old Japanese. The Kojiki is divided into three parts: the Nakatsumaki and the Shimotsumaki; the Kamitsumaki known as the Kamiyo no Maki, includes the preface of the Kojiki, is focused on the deities of creation and the births of various deities of the kamiyo period, or Age of the Gods. The Kamitsumaki outlines the myths concerning the foundation of Japan, it describes how Ninigi-no-Mikoto, grandson of Amaterasu and great-grandfather of Emperor Jimmu, descended from heaven to Takachihonomine in Kyūshū and became the progenitor of the Japanese Imperial line.
The Nakatsumaki begins with the story of Emperor Jimmu, the first Emperor, his conquest of Japan, ends with the 15th Emperor, Emperor Ōjin. The second through ninth Emperors' reigns are recorded in a minimum of detail, with only their names, the names of their various descendants, the place-names of their palaces and tombs listed, no mention of their achievements. Many of the stories in this volume are mythological, the historical information in them is suspect; the Shimotsumaki covers the 16th to 33rd Emperors and, unlike previous volumes, has limited references to the interactions with deities. These interactions are prominent in the first and second volumes. Information about the 24th to the 33rd Emperors is missing, as well. What follows is a condensed summary of the contents of the text, including many of the names of gods and locations as well as events which took place in association to them; the original Japanese is included in parentheses where appropriate. The handing down of old folklore and its significance Emperor Tenmu and setting out the Kojiki Ō no Yasumaro compiling the Kojiki In the Edo period, Motoori Norinaga studied the Kojiki intensively.
He produced. Chamberlain, Basil Hall. 1882. A translation of the "Ko-ji-ki" or Records of ancient matters. Yokohama, Japan: R. Meiklejohn and Co. Printers. Philippi, Donald L. 1968/1969. Kojiki. Princeton, N. J.: Princeton University Press and Tokyo: University of Tokyo Press. Heldt, Gustav. 2014. The Kojiki: An Account of Ancient Matters. New York: Columbia University Press. There are two major branches of Kojiki manuscripts: Urabe; the extant Urabe branch consists of 36 existing manuscripts all based on the 1522 copies by Urabe Kanenaga. The Ise branch may be subdivided into the Shinpukuji-bon manuscript of 1371–1372 and the Dōka-bon manuscripts; the Dōka sub-branch consists of: the Dōka-bon manuscript of 1381.