Friday, December 7, 2012

Susanoo's Unusual Komainu


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Scattered across the remote mountains of Inner izumo are a series of mountain shrines to my favorite kami, Susano. Finally i was able to visit Yaeyama Shrine located on Mount Yaeyama .

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I will post more on the shrine at a later date, but for now I just want to show you the rather unusual komainu.

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As I wander the backroads of rural japan I am always on the lookout for diversity.... homogenity is such a sickness :). and in the "arts" of local shrines is one place where diversity can be found...

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The faces of these komainu are not so unusual, but the stance and body forms are....

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The author of a book I have on the komainu of izumo believe these were carved by a man in Yunotsu, but doesnt give any dates. He also believes that originally they were located inside the gate.

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Incidentally, a pair of komainu at another Susano shrine, Yaegaki near Matsue, are believed to be among the oldest in japan....

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