Yamata no Orochi
Yamata no Orochi or Orochi, is a legendary 8-headed and 8-tailed Japanese dragon. Yamata no Orochi legends are recorded in two ancient texts about Japanese mythology and history; the ca. 680 AD Kojiki transcribes this dragon name as 八岐遠呂智 and ca. 720 AD Nihongi writes it as 八岐大蛇. In both versions of the Orochi myth, the Shinto storm god Susanoo or Susa-no-O is expelled from Heaven for tricking his sister Amaterasu, the sun goddess. After expulsion from Heaven, Susanoo encounters two "Earthly Deities" near the head of the Hi River, now called the Hii River, in Izumo Province, they are weeping because they were forced to give the Orochi one of their daughters every year for seven years, now they must sacrifice their eighth, Kushi-inada-hime. The Kojiki tells the following version: So, having been expelled, descended to a place Tori-kami at the head-waters of the River Hi in the Land of Idzumo. At this time some chopsticks came floating down the stream. So His-Swift-Impetuous-Male-Augustness, thinking that there must be people at the head-waters of the river, went up it in quest of them, when he came upon an old man and an old woman, --two of them,--who had a young girl between them, were weeping.
He deigned to ask: "Who are ye?" So the old man replied. I am called by the name of Foot-Stroking-Elder, my wife is called by the name of Hand-Stroking Elder, my daughter is called by the name of Wondrous-Inada-Princess." Again he asked: What is the cause of your crying?" Saying: "I had eight young girls as daughters. But the eight-forked serpent of Koshi has come every year and devoured, it is now its time to come, wherefore we weep." He asked him: "What is its form like?" answered, saying: "Its eyes are like akakagachi, it has one body with eight heads and eight tails. Moreover on its body grows moss, chamaecyparis and cryptomerias, its length extends over eight valleys and eight hills, if one look at its belly, it is all bloody and inflamed." His-Swift-Impetuous-Male-Augustness said to the old man: "If this be thy daughter, wilt thou offer her to me?" He replied, saying: "With reverence, but I know not thine august name." He replied, saying: "I am elder brother to the Heaven-Shining-Great-August-Deity.
So I have now descended from Heaven." The Deities Foot-Stroker-Elder and Hand-Stroking-Elder said: "If that be so, with reverence will we offer." So His-Swift-Impetuous-Male-Augustness, at once taking and changing the young girl into a multitudinous and close-toothed comb which he stuck into his august hair-bunch, said to the Deities Foot-Stroking-Elder and Hand-Stroking-Elder: "Do you distill some eight-fold refined liquor. Make a fence round about, in that fence make eight gates, at each gate tie eight platforms, on each platform put a liquor-vat, into each vat pour the eight-fold refined liquor, wait." So as they waited after having thus prepared everything in accordance with his bidding, the eight-forked serpent came as had said, dipped a head into each vat, drank the liquor. Thereupon it was intoxicated with drinking, all lay down and slept. His-Swift-Impetuous-Male-Augustness drew the ten-grasp sabre, augustly girded on him, cut the serpent in pieces, so that the River Hi flowed on changed into a river of blood.
So when he cut the middle tail, the edge of his august sword broke. Thinking it strange, he thrust into and split with the point of his august sword and looked, there was a great sword. So he took this great sword, thinking it a strange thing, he respectfully informed the Heaven-Shining-Great-August-Deity; this is the Herb-Quelling Great Sword. Compare the Nihongi description of Yamata no Orochi. "It had an eight-forked tail. As it crawled it extended over a space of eight hills and eight valleys." These botanical names used to describe this Orochi are akakagachi or hoozuki, hikage and sugi. The legendary sword Kusanagi-no-Tsurugi, which came from the tail of Yamata no Orochi, along with the Yata no Kagami mirror and Yasakani no Magatama jewel, became the three sacred Imperial Regalia of Japan; the Japanese name orochi 大蛇 derives from Old Japanese woröti. Besides this ancient orochi reading, the kanji 大蛇 are pronounced daija "big snake. Carr notes that Japanese scholars have proposed "more than a dozen" orochi < woröti etymologies, while Western linguists have suggested loanwords from Austronesian and Indo-European languages.
The most feasible native etymological proposals are Japanese o- from o 尾 "tail", ō 大 "big. Benedict proposed woröti "large snake" was suffixed from Proto-Austro-Japanese *oröt-i acquired from Austronesian *uḷəj "snake.
Shinigami are gods or supernatural spirits that invite humans toward death, can be seen to be present or interpreted to be present in certain aspects of Japanese religion and culture. Shinigami have been described as monsters and helpers, creatures of darkness, fallen angels. Many cultures describe Shinigami as Death themselves. In Buddhism, there is the Mara, concerned with death, the Mrtyu-mara, it is a demon that makes humans want to die, it is said that upon being possessed by it, in a shock, one should want to commit suicide, so it is sometimes explained to be a "shinigami". In the Yogacarabhumi-sastra, a writing on Yogacara, a demon decided the time of people's deaths. Yama, the king of the Underworld, as well as oni like the Ox-Head and Horse-Face are considered a type of shinigami. In Shinto and Japanese mythology, Izanami gave humans death, so Izanami is sometimes seen as a shinigami; however and Yama are thought to be different from the death gods in western mythology. Some forms of Buddhism do not involve believing in any deities, so it is sometimes thought that the concept of a death god does not exist to begin with.
Though the kijin and onryō of Japanese Buddhist faith have taken humans' lives, there is the opinion that there is no "death god" that leads people into the world of the dead. After the war, the western notion of a death god entered Japan, shinigami started to become mentioned as an existence with a human nature; the word "shinigami" does not appear to be used in Japanese classical literature, there are not many writings about them, but going into the Edo period, the word "shinigami" can be seen in Chikamatsu Monzaemon's works of ningyō jōruri and classical literature that had themes on double suicides. In Hōei 3, in a performance of the "Shinchuu Nimai Soushi", concerning men and women who were invited towards death, it was written "the road the god of death leads towards", in Hōei 6, in "Shinchuuha ha Koori no Sakujitsu", a woman, about to commit double suicide with a man said, "the fleetingness of a life lured by a god of death", it never became clear whether the man and woman came to commit double suicide due to the existence of a shinigami, or if a shinigami was given as an example for their situation of double suicide, there are interpretations that the word "shinigami" is an expression for the fleetingness of life.
Other than that, in Kyōhō 5, in a performance of The Love Suicides at Amijima, there was the expression, "of one possessed by a god of death". Since the character was seller of paper, the character who confronted death wrote "paper" as "god", but there are interpretations that Chikamatsu himself didn't think about the existence of a shinigami. In the classical literature of the Edo period, shinigami that would possess humans are mentioned. In the Ehon Hyaku Monogatari from Tenpō 12, there was a story titled "Shinigami", but in this one, the shinigami was the spirit of a deceased one and had bad intent, acting in jointly with the malicious intent within people who were living, those people were led on bad paths, which caused repeat incidents to occur at places where there was a murder incident, for example by causing the same suicide at places where people have hanged themselves before, thus these shinigami are somewhat like a possession that would cause people to want to die. Close to this, according to the essay of the Bakumatsu period titled "Hogo no Uragaki", there were the itsuki that made people want to commit suicide through hanging, as well as things told through folk religion such as gaki-tsuki and shichinin misaki.
In the Edo Period, the essay "Shōzan Chomon Kishū" in Kaei 3 by the essayist Miyoshi Shōzan, the one titled "upon possession by a shinigami, it becomes difficult to speak, or easier to tell lies" was a story where a prostitute possessed by a shinigami invites a man to commit double suicide, in the kabuki Mekuranagaya Umega Kagatobi by Kawatake Mokuami in Meiji 19, a shinigami enters into people's thoughts, making them think about bad things they have done and want to die. These are, rather than more like yūki, or evil spirits. In the San-yūtei Enchō of classical rakugo, there was a programme titled "Shinigami", but this was something, not thought of independently in Japan, but rather from adaptions of the Italian opera the Crispino e la comare and the Grimm Fairy Tale "Godfather Death". Shinigami are spoken about in folk religion after the war. According to the mores of Miyajima, Kumamoto Prefecture, those who go out and return to attend to someone through the night must drink tea or eat a bowl of rice before sleeping, it is said that a shinigami would visit if this was ignored.
In the Hamamatsu area, Shizuoka Prefecture, a shinigami would possess people and lead them to mountains and railroads where people have died. In those places, the dead would have a "death turn", as long as there is nobody to die there next, they shall never ascend if they were given a service, it was said that people who were alive would be invited by the dead to come next, it is ordinary to visit graves for the sake of Higan during noon or when the sun sets, but in the Okayama Prefecture, visiting the grave for Higan during sunrise without a previous time would result in being possessed by a shinigami. However, once one has visited the grave in sunset it would become necessary to visit the grave again during sunrise, to avoid a shinigami possessing one's body. With this background of folk belief, it is thought that sometimes people would consider the ghosts of the deceased, who have nobody to deify them, to b
Vaiśravaṇa or Vessavaṇa, is one of the Four Heavenly Kings, is considered an important figure in Japanese Buddhism. The name Vaiśravaṇa is a vṛddhi derivative of the Sanskrit proper name Viśravaṇa from the root vi-śru "hear distinctly", "become famous"; the name Vaiśravaṇa is derived from the Sanskrit viśravaṇa which means "son of Vishrava", a usual epithet of the Hindu god Kubera. Vaiśravaṇa is known as Kubera and Jambhala in Sanskrit and Kuvera in Pāli. Other names include: traditional Chinese: 多聞天; this was a loanword from Vaiśravaṇa into Middle Chinese with the addition of the word "heaven, god" Tibetan: རྣམ་ཐོས་སྲས, Wylie: rnam thos sras, THL Namthöse, "Prince All-Hearing", a calque of Sanskrit Vaiśravaṇa Mongolian: Баян Намсрай bajn namsrɛ is a loan from Tibetan thos sras, a short form of Tibetan rnam thos sras with the addition of an honorific Thai: ท้าวกุเวร Thao Kuwen or ท้าวเวสสุวรรณ Thao Wetsuwan is an honorific plus the modern pronunciation of Pali Vessavaṇa. The character of Vaiśravaṇa is founded upon the Hindu deity Kubera, but although the Buddhist and Hindu deities share some characteristics and epithets, each of them has different functions and associated myths.
Although brought into East Asia as a Buddhist deity, Vaiśravaṇa has become a character in folk religion and has acquired an identity, independent of the Buddhist tradition. Vaiśravaṇa is the guardian of the northern direction, his home is in the northern quadrant of the topmost tier of the lower half of Sumeru, he is the leader of all the yakṣas. He is portrayed with a yellow face, he carries an parasol as a symbol of his sovereignty. He is sometimes displayed with a mongoose shown ejecting jewels from its mouth; the mongoose is the enemy of a symbol of greed or hatred. In the Pāli Canon of Theravāda Buddhism, Vaiśravaṇa is called Vessavaṇa. Vessavaṇa is one of the Cātummahārājāno or "Four Great Kings", each of whom rules over a specific direction. Vessavaṇa's realm is the northern quadrant including the land of Uttarakuru. According to some suttas, he takes his name from a region. Vessavaṇa governs the yakshas – beings with a nature between'fairy' and'ogre'. Vessavaṇa's wife is named Bhuñjatī, he has five daughters, Latā, Sajjā, Pavarā, Acchimatī, Sutā.
He has a nephew called Puṇṇaka, a yakkha, husband of the nāga woman Irandatī. He has a chariot called Nārīvāhana, he is called gadāvudha "armed with a club", but he only used it before he became a follower of the Buddha. Vessavaṇa has the name "Kuvera" from a name he had from a past life as a rich Brahmin mill-owner from Sri Lanka, who gave all the produce of one of his seven mills to charity, provided alms to the needy for 20,000 years, he was reborn in the Cātummahārājikā heaven as a result of this good karma. As with all the Buddhist deities, Vessavaṇa is properly the name of an office rather than a permanent individual; each Vessavaṇa is mortal, when he dies, he will be replaced by a new Vessavaṇa. Like other beings of the Cātummahārājika world, his lifespan is 90,000 years. Vessavaṇa has the authority to grant the yakkhas particular areas to protect, these are assigned at the beginning of a Vessavaṇa's reign; when Gautama Buddha was born, Vessavaṇa became his follower, attained the stage of sotāpanna, one who has only seven more lives before enlightenment.
He brought the Buddha and his followers messages from the gods and other humans, protected them. He presented to the Buddha the Āṭānāṭā verses, which Buddhists meditating in the forest could use to ward off the attacks of wild yakkhas or other supernatural beings who do not have faith in the Buddha; these verses are an early form of paritta chanting. Bimbisāra, King of Magadha, after his death was reborn as a yakkha called Janavasabha in the retinue of Vessavaṇa. In the early years of Buddhism, Vessavaṇa was worshipped at trees dedicated to him as shrines; some people appealed to him to grant them children. In Japan, Bishamonten, or just Bishamon is thought of as an armor-clad god of war or warriors and a punisher of evildoers. Bishamon is portrayed holding a spear in one hand and a small pagoda in the other hand, the latter symbolizing the divine treasure house, whose contents he both guards and gives away. In Japanese folklore, he is one of the Seven Lucky Gods. Bishamon is called Tamonten because he is seen as the guardian of the places where the Buddha preaches.
He is believed to live halfway down Mount Sumeru. He is associated with Hachiman. In Tibet, Vaiśravaṇa is considered a dharmapāla in the retinue of Ratnasambhava, he is known as the King of the North. As guardian of the north, he is depicted on temple murals outside the main door, he is thought of as a god of wealth. As such, Vaiśravaṇa is sometimes portrayed carrying a citron, the fruit of the jambhara tree, a pun on another name of his, Jambhala; the fruit helps distinguish him iconically from depictions of Kuvera. He is sometimes represented as corpulent and
In Japanese folklore, Ryūgū-jō is the undersea palace of Ryūjin, the dragon kami of the sea. Depending on the version of the legend, it is built from solid crystal; the inhabitants of the palace were Ryūjin's servants, who were denizens of the sea. In some legends, on each of the four sides of the palace it is a different season, one day in the palace is equal to a century outside its boundaries; the most famous legend about the palace concerns Urashima Tarō's visit to Ryūgū-jō for three days. Katase-Enoshima Station in Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture, is designed to evoke the feeling of Ryūgū-jō. In the Ryukyuan religion, Ryūgū-jō is the source of fire for all village hearths; the Sea King and Vasilisa the Wise Eglė the Queen of Serpents
The Nihon Shoki, sometimes translated as The Chronicles of Japan, is the second-oldest book of classical Japanese history. The book is called the Nihongi, it is more elaborate and detailed than the Kojiki, the oldest, has proven to be an important tool for historians and archaeologists as it includes the most complete extant historical record of ancient Japan. The Nihon Shoki was finished in 720 under the editorial supervision of Prince Toneri and with the assistance of Ō no Yasumaro dedicated to Empress Genshō; the Nihon Shoki begins with the Japanese creation myth, explaining the origin of the world and the first seven generations of divine beings, goes on with a number of myths as does the Kojiki, but continues its account through to events of the 8th century. It is believed to record the latter reigns of Emperor Tenji, Emperor Tenmu and Empress Jitō; the Nihon Shoki focuses on the merits of the virtuous rulers as well as the errors of the bad rulers. It describes diplomatic contacts with other countries.
The Nihon Shoki was written in classical Chinese. The Kojiki, on the other hand, is written in a combination of Chinese and phonetic transcription of Japanese; the Nihon Shoki contains numerous transliteration notes telling the reader how words were pronounced in Japanese. Collectively, the stories in this book and the Kojiki are referred to as the Kiki stories; the tale of Urashima Tarō is developed from the brief mention in Nihon Shoki that a certain child of Urashima visited Horaisan and saw wonders. The tale has plainly incorporated elements from the famous anecdote of "Luck of the Sea and Luck of the Mountains" found in Nihon Shoki; the developed Urashima tale contains the Rip Van Winkle motif, so some may consider it an early example of fictional time travel. Chapter 01: Kami no Yo no Kami no maki. Chapter 02: Kami no Yo no Shimo no maki. Chapter 03: Kan'yamato Iwarebiko no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 04: Kamu Nunakawamimi no Sumeramikoto. Shikitsuhiko Tamatemi no Sumeramikoto. Ōyamato Hikosukitomo no Sumeramikoto.
Mimatsuhiko Sukitomo no Sumeramikoto. Yamato Tarashihiko Kuni Oshihito no Sumeramikoto. Ōyamato Nekohiko Futoni no Sumeramikoto. Ōyamato Nekohiko Kunikuru no Sumeramikoto. Wakayamato Nekohiko Ōbibi no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 05: Mimaki Iribiko Iniye no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 06: Ikume Iribiko Isachi no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 07: Ōtarashihiko Oshirowake no Sumeramikoto. Waka Tarashihiko no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 08: Tarashi Nakatsuhiko no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 09: Okinaga Tarashihime no Mikoto. Chapter 10: Homuda no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 11: Ōsasagi no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 12: Izahowake no Sumeramikoto. Mitsuhawake no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 13: Oasazuma Wakugo no Sukune no Sumeramikoto. Anaho no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 14: Ōhatsuse no Waka Takeru no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 15: Shiraka no Take Hirokuni Oshi Waka Yamato Neko no Sumeramikoto. Woke no Sumeramikoto. Oke no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 16: Ohatsuse no Waka Sasagi no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 17: Ōdo no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 18: Hirokuni Oshi Take Kanahi no Sumeramikoto.
Take Ohirokuni Oshi Tate no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 19: Amekuni Oshiharaki Hironiwa no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 20: Nunakakura no Futo Tamashiki no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 21: Tachibana no Toyohi no Sumeramikoto. Hatsusebe no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 22: Toyomike Kashikiya Hime no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 23: Okinaga Tarashi Hihironuka no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 24: Ame Toyotakara Ikashi Hitarashi no Hime no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 25: Ame Yorozu Toyohi no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 26: Ame Toyotakara Ikashi Hitarashi no Hime no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 27: Ame Mikoto Hirakasuwake no Sumeramikoto. Chapter 28: Ama no Nunakahara Oki no Mahito no Sumeramikoto, Kami no maki. Chapter 29: Ama no Nunakahara Oki no Mahito no Sumeramikoto, Shimo no maki. Chapter 30: Takamanohara Hirono Hime no Sumeramikoto; the background of the compilation of the Nihon Shoki is that Emperor Tenmu ordered 12 people, including Prince Kawashima, to edit the old history of the empire. Shoku Nihongi notes that "先是一品舍人親王奉勅修日本紀。至是功成奏上。紀卅卷系圖一卷" in the part of May, 720.
It means "Up to that time, Prince Toneri had been compiling Nihongi on the orders of the emperor. The process of compilation is studied by stylistic analysis of each chapter. Although written in classical Chinese character, some sections use styles characteristic of Japanese editors; the Nihon Shoki is a synthesis of older documents on the records, continuously kept in the Yamato court since the sixth century. It includes documents and folklore submitted by clans serving the court. Prior to Nihon Shoki, there were Tennōki and Kokki compiled by Prince Shōtoku and Soga no Umako, but as they were stored in Soga's residence, they were burned at the time of the Isshi Incident; the work's contributors refer to various sources
Emperor Jimmu was the first Emperor of Japan, according to legend. His accession is traditionally dated as 660 BC. According to Japanese mythology, he is a descendant of the sun goddess Amaterasu, through her grandson Ninigi, as well as a descendant of the storm god Susanoo, he launched a military expedition from Hyuga near the Seto Inland Sea, captured Yamato, established this as his center of power. In modern Japan, Jimmu's accession is marked as National Foundation Day on February 11. Jimmu is recorded as Japan's first ruler in Nihon Shoki and Kojiki. Nihon Shoki gives the dates of his reign as 660–585 BC. In the reign of Emperor Kanmu, the eighth-century scholar Ōmi no Mifune designated rulers before Ōjin as tennō, a Japanese pendant to the Chinese imperial title Tiān-dì, gave several of them including Jimmu their canonical names. Prior to this time, these rulers had been known as Sumera no mikoto/Ōkimi; this practice had begun under Empress Suiko, took root after the Taika Reforms with the ascendancy of the Nakatomi clan.
According to the legendary account in the Kojiki, Emperor Jimmu was born on February 13, 711 BC, died, again according to legend, on April 9, 585 BC. Both the Kojiki and the Nihon Shoki give Jimmu's name as Kamu-yamato Iware-biko no Mikoto. Iware indicates a toponym; the Imperial House of Japan traditionally based its claim to the throne on its putative descent from the sun-goddess Amaterasu via Jimmu's great-grandfather Ninigi. Consort: Ahiratsu-hime, Honosusori's daughter First son: Prince Tagishimimi Prince Kisumimi Empress: Himetataraisuzu-hime, Kotoshironushi's daughter Prince Hikoyai Second son: Prince Kamuyaimimi Third son: Prince Kamununakawamimi Emperor Suizei In Japanese mythology, the Age of the Gods is the period before Jimmu's accession; the story of Jimmu seems to rework legends associated with the Ōtomo clan, its function was to establish that clan's links to the ruling family, just as those of Suijin arguably reflect Mononobe tales and the legends in Ōjin's chronicles seem to derive from Soga clan traditions.
Jimmu figures as a direct descendant of the sun goddess, Amaterasu via the side of his father, Ugayafukiaezu. Amaterasu had a son called Ame no Oshihomimi no Mikoto and through him a grandson named Ninigi-no-Mikoto, she sent her grandson to the Japanese islands where he married Konohana-Sakuya-hime. Among their three sons was Hikohohodemi no Mikoto called Yamasachi-hiko, who married Toyotama-hime, she was the daughter of the Japanese sea god. They had a single son called Hikonagisa Takeugaya Fukiaezu no Mikoto; the boy was abandoned by his parents at birth and raised by Tamayori-hime, his mother's younger sister. They married and had four sons; the last of these, Kamu-yamato Iware-biko no mikoto, became Emperor Jimmu. According to the chronicles Kojiki and Nihon Shoki, Jimmu's brothers were born in Takachiho, the southern part of Kyūshū in modern-day Miyazaki Prefecture, they moved eastward to find a location more appropriate for administering the entire country. Jimmu's older brother, Itsuse no Mikoto led the migration, led the clan eastward through the Seto Inland Sea with the assistance of local chieftain Sao Netsuhiko.
As they reached Naniwa, they encountered another local chieftain and Itsuse was killed in the ensuing battle. Jimmu realized that they had been defeated because they battled eastward against the sun, so he decided to land on the east side of Kii Peninsula and to battle westward, they reached Kumano, with the guidance of a three-legged crow, they moved to Yamato. There, they were victorious. In Yamato, Nigihayahi no Mikoto, who claim descent from the Takamagahara gods, was protected by Nagasunehiko. However, when Nigihayahi met Jimmu, he accepted Jimmu's legitimacy. At this point, Jimmu is said to have ascended to the throne of Japan. Upon scaling a Nara mountain to survey the Seto Inland Sea he now controlled, Jimmu remarked that it was shaped like the "heart" rings made by mating dragonflies, archaically akitsu 秋津. A mosquito tried to steal Jimmu's royal blood but since Jimmu was a god incarnate Emperor, akitsumikami, a dragonfly killed the mosquito. Japan thus received its classical name akitsushima.
According to the Kojiki, Jimmu died. The Emperor's posthumous name means "divine might" or "god-warrior", it is thought that Jimmu's name and character evolved into their present shape just before the time in which legends about the origins of the Yamato dynasty were chronicled in the Kojiki. There are accounts written earlier than either Kojiki and Nihon Shoki that present an alternative version of the story. According to these accounts, Jimmu's dynasty was supplanted by that of Ōjin, whose dynasty was supplanted by that of Keitai; the Kojiki and the Nihon Shoki combined these three mythical dynasties into one long and continuous genealogy. The traditional site of Jimmu's grave is near Unebiyama in Kashihara; the Japanese historian Ino Okifu identifies Jimmu with the Han Chinese explorer and sage Xu Fu, who searched for the Philosopher's stone for emperor Qin Shihuangdi. Xu Fu reached Japan with over women and never returned. After his arrival the Yayoi period started. Veneration of Jimmu was a central component of the imperial cult that formed following the Meiji Restor
Japanese mythology embraces Shinto and Buddhist traditions as well as agriculturally-based folk religion. The Shinto pantheon comprises innumerable kami; this article will discuss only the typical elements present in Asian mythology, such as cosmogony, important deities, the best-known Japanese stories. Japanese myths, as recognized in the mainstream today, are based on the Kojiki, the Nihon Shoki, some complementary books; the Kojiki, or "Record of Ancient Matters", is the oldest surviving account of Japan's myths and history. The Shintōshū describes the origins of Japanese deities from a Buddhist perspective, while the Hotsuma Tsutae records a different version of the mythology. One notable feature of Japanese mythology is its explanation of the origin of the Imperial Family, used to assign godhood to the imperial line; the title of the Emperor of Japan, tennō, means "heavenly sovereign". Japanese is not transliterated across all sources, see: #Spelling of proper nouns In the Japanese creation myth, the first deities which came into existence, appearing at the time of the creation of the universe, are collectively called Kotoamatsukami.
The seven generations of kami, known as Kamiyonanayo, following the formation of heaven and earth. The first two generations are individual deities called hitorigami, while the five that followed came into being as male/female pairs of kami: brothers and sisters that were married couples. In this chronicle, the Kamiyonanayo comprise 12 deities in total. In contrast, the Nihon Shoki states that the Kamiyonanayo group was the first to appear after the creation of the universe, as opposed to the Kamiyonanayo appearing after the formation of heaven and earth, it states that the first three generations of deities are hitorigami and that the generations of deities are pairs of the opposite gender, as compared to the Kojiki's two generations of hitorigami. Japan's creation narrative can be divided into the birth of the land; the seventh and last generation of Kamiyonanayo were Izanagi no Mikoto and Izanami no Mikoto, they would be responsible for the creation of the Japanese archipelago and would engender other deities.
To help them to achieve this and Izanami were given a naginata decorated with jewels, named Ame-no-nuboko. The two deities went to the bridge between heaven and earth and churned the sea below with the halberd. Drops of salty water formed Onogoro; the deities made their home on the island. They fell in love and wished to mate. So they built. Izanagi and Izanami circled the pillar in opposite directions, when they met on the other side, the female deity, spoke first in greeting. Izanagi didn't think that this was proper, they had two children and Awashima, but the children were badly formed and are not considered gods in their original form. The parents, who were dismayed at their misfortune, put the children into a boat and sent them to sea, petitioned the other gods for an answer about what they had done wrong, they were informed that Izanami's lack of manners was the reason for the defective births: a woman should never speak prior to a man. So Izanagi and Izanami went around the pillar again, this time, when they met, Izanagi spoke first.
Their next union was successful. From their union were born the Ōyashima, or the eight great islands of Japan: Awaji Iyo Oki Tsukushi Iki Tsushima Sado Yamato Note that Hokkaidō, Chishima and Okinawa were not part of Japan in ancient times. Izanami died giving birth to Kagutsuchi called Homusubi due to severe burns, she was buried on Mount Hiba, at the border of the old provinces of Izumo and Hoki, near modern-day Yasugi of Shimane Prefecture. In anger, Izanagi killed Kagutsuchi, his death created dozens of deities. The gods who were born from Izanagi and Izanami are symbolic aspects of culture. Izanagi undertook a journey to Yomi. Izanagi found little difference between Yomi and the land except for the eternal darkness. However, this suffocating darkness was enough to make him ache for life, he searched for Izanami and found her. At first, Izanagi could not see her, he asked her to return with him. Izanami informed him that he was too late, she had eaten the food of the underworld and now belonged to the land of the dead.
Izanagi was shocked at this news, but he refused to give in to her wishes to be left to the dark embrace of Yomi. Izanami first requested to have some time to rest, she instructed Izanagi to not come into her bedroom. After a long wait, Izanami did not come out of her bedroom, Izanagi was worried. While Izanami was sleeping, he took the comb that set it alight as a torch. Under the sudden burst of light, he saw the horrid form of the once graceful Izanami; the flesh of her ravaged body was rotting and was overrun with maggots and fou