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Sunday, August 7, 2016

Shikaumi Shrine

Shikaumi shrine (志賀海神社) is located in Shikanoshima island (志賀島), Fukuoka Prefecture (福岡県).Shikanoshima is indeed an island, however, it is connected to Kyushu island via Umi no nakamichi (海の中道), which is a tombolo.




So called "Watatsumi sanshin (= three deities related to the sea/綿津見三神) are enshrined. "Wata" means ocean (海) in Ancient Japanese, "tsu" means 'of/の' and "mi" means spirit. After passing the Tower gate (楼門), three main halls are ahead of you. From the left through middle to right; Naka(=middle/)tsuwatatsumi (仲津綿津見神), Soko(=bottom/底)tsuwatatsumi (底津綿津見神) and Uwa(=surface/表)tsuwatatsumi (表津綿津見神) are enshrined, respectively. 





They appear in the chapter called "Kamiumi (=the birth of the gods/神産み)" in Japanese mythologiesKojiki (古事記) and Nihon shoki (日本書紀). When Izanagi (イザナギ) came back from Yomi (=the world of the death/黄泉), he performed "misogi (the purification ceremony/禊)" through which numerous deities are born (Purification of Izanagi). Watatsumi three deities are born at the same time as Sumiyoshi three deities (住吉三神) were.

Tiny divine bridge in front of romon gate

In Japanese mythology, Azumi clan (安曇氏) claims to be the descendant of Watatsumi sanshin. They are believed to be one of the main marine traders and later on they scattered all over Japan. When the town is named "Azumi" (阿曇/安曇) or "Atsumi" (厚見/厚海/渥美/阿積/泉/熱海/飽海), they are likely to be the places where Azumi clan used to settle!!!



Oh dear...!


In the precinct of the shrine, more than 10,000 deer horns are dedicated in the Rokkakudo hall (鹿角堂).



It was so unfortunate that it was raining when I visited there (as you can see from photos above) because Shikanoshima island (志賀島) is such a breathtaking place!!! 

Please enjoy official video of Shikaumi shrine!!!


As all of visitor are aware of, I am Shinto geek (otaku), visiting as many shrines as possible when I am in Japan. Shikaumi shrine is definitely one of my favorite shrines utterly worth visiting!!! I bet I will visit once again when the weather is nice xD.