Fushimi Inari Shinto Shrine Japan Visit & Meditation - ONLINE via ZOOM with Jess & Linda Crawford
Why just stay home? Come to Japan with us online, information and meditation.
A virtual visit to Kyoto Japan with Jessica Miller (in California) and Linda Crawford on the ground where she lives in Kyoto Japan. Originally from the US, Linda has lived 51 years in Kyoto, and is bilingual.
Linda is Jess’s dear friend, translator and local informant in Japan, and knows a great deal about Japanese Culture and Buddhism, and has taken all my Reiki Classes. She has assisted in my group trips to Japan, and contributed a great deal to Jess’s book: Reiki’s Birthplace.
This event will be at Fushimi Inari. One of the advantages of our current times is that many of Japan’s typically most crowded tourist and power places are much more empty.
Fushimi Inari is one of the most picturesque shrines in Kyoto, and like Kurama/Kibune, predates the founding of Kyoto in 794. When Linda first moved to Japan, she found it to be a very powerful place, but it has been hard to appreciate with the typical crowds. So now is the time to go!
May the Nature Spirits be with you!
Fushimi Inari Shrine = Fushimi Inari Taisha
The sacred mountain Inariyama (ine=rice grain, yama=mountain) is itself the Fushimi Inari Shrine, much like all of Kurama mountain is the greater temple of Kurama Temple. The shrine is big, the head shrine of the Inari Shinto sect with sub-shrines all over Japan. It focusses primarily on crop fertility, especially rice. Its mascot / symbolic animal, a messenger of the Kami (Spirits), is a mischievous looking white fox; two sit as guardians in front of each Kami’s shrine building. And it is famous for its winding tunnels of bright vermilion torii gates.
Fushimi Inari is a Shinto shrine, distinguished from a Buddhist temple like Kurama Temple. Shinto worships the spirits that indwell in everything in nature. It has no dogma, nor sutras and holy books, they say, though the priests have plenty of words to intone inside the shrine when a person or family is having a ritual - baptism, wedding, blessing (one shrine has a ritual parking space for blessing cars) with gong and drum and flute. It has rituals to approach and worship the indwelling Kami spirits, and festivals to mark the time of year, especially planting and harvesting. Purification is very important, so washing hands fits perfectly now. The priests’ everyday clothing is all white. People and priests and priestesses dance and make music for the Kami. As with Buddhism, there seem to be no gatherings for Saturday or Sunday morning - people gather around Shrines at special occasions and festivals.
The Inari sect of Shintoism began in 711 C.E. as a form of mountain worship in which Inariyama mountain came to be designated as a kamnabi, a place in nature where a local deity was first enshrined. Shrine texts describe Fushimi Inari’s five-part deity as “a deity who feeds, clothes and houses us, and protects us so that all of us may live with abundance and pleasure. The five deities are collectively known as Inari-Okami, which is similar to the three deities of Kurama Temple who are collectively known as Sonten. It is perfectly acceptable in Japan to practice both Buddhism, especially for funerals, and Shinto, especially for weddings, so everyone can go and pray and join in the festivals at Fushimi Inari as well as at Kurama Temple.
Fushimi is famous for the long rows of vermilion gates, called torii. They have been donated by thousands of people, worshippers and people hoping to benefit, and they snake hither and thither all the way up the mountain and down again. Their spectacular vermillion paint is used on all Shinto buildings. It is made of mercury and earth, and protects the wood. Along the pathways of the shrine gateways (torii), lots and lots of smaller shrines (hokora), sites of former shrines where deities remain (shinseki), worshiping stones engraved with deities’ names (otsuka), small shops now closed, and other features can be found all over this holy mountainside.
Both Kurama Temple, on the holy Kurama mountain north of the city, and Fushimi Inari Shrine, on the holy Inuyama mountain southeast of the city, were built before Kyoto became the capital. They were here first. They protected, and perhaps set the very tone of sacredness for the city, lasting to this very day.
greenshinto.com. Excellent site about Shinto in English
http://inari.jp/en/. Fushimi Inari’s official site, English section
May the Nature Spirits be with you!
My hope is to do a series of Kyoto excursions with Linda, and let her explain various aspects of Japanese culture, and tradition, and we can ask questions, and have a meditation time at the end to absorb the energy of the place. In addition to the many locations on Kurama, Kyoto has hundreds of temples, gardens, and many other historical and powerful places. While it will be evening in California, in Japan it will be morning the following day.
Zoom meeting info will be included in the confirmation email, and repeated in mail message a bit prior to the class.
If any trouble TEXT me at 626/963-3533
- Jessica miller