Saturday, July 13, 2019

Yowara Shrine


In the mountains of Nichinan, Miyazaki, about 25 kilometers southwest of Udo Jingu, is the rather grand and elaborate shrine of Yowara Jinja.


Brightly painted in vermillion, with an impressive two storey gate that still houses 2 Buddhist Nio guardians, and an equally impressive Bell Tower, the shrine was founded in 1658 by a local man whose lover insisted on its construction.


It is, in essence, a branch of Udo Jingu and enshrines the same 6 main kami as Udo Jingu, Amaterasu, Ninigi, Hoori, etc.


I believe the architectural style is called Gongen Zukuri, gongen being Buddhist manifestations, and the style of architecture incorprates a shared roof over the worship hall and honden. Udo Jingu was itself a Buddhist institution until 1868, and many, many shrines still have Buddhist architecture and features.


Yowara Shrine is not well visitedm though it is now the tutelary shrine for the area so gets lots of visitirs at the New Year.

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