2016-09-20

shinka divine fire legends

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. Japanese legends and tales 伝説 民話 昔話 - Introduction .
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shinka 神火と伝説 Legends about "divine fire"
shinka 神火 / シンカ "fire of the gods", "light of the gods"
goshinka, go-shinka 御神火 "divine fire" from a volcano


A "divine fire" can be related to various things.

. jishin 地震と伝説 Legends about Earthquakes .

In July of the year 1780 there was a strong quake of about M 7.4 in the Shonai region.
One month later people saw smoke and a shinka 神火 "divine fire" coming out of 御嶽南の峰 the South peak of Mount Ontake. The smoke like black clouds could be seen from far away.



Kiso Ontake-san,御嶽山 the second highest volcano in Japan
Eruption on September 27, 2014, ...
- - - More in the WIKIPEDIA !

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. ryuutoo 竜燈 / 龍燈 dragon lantern .
A phenomenon at the Ariakekai sea in Kagoshima, Kyushu, in the evening hours.
It is also seen in other parts of Japan as a light that the Dragon God sends out to honor the deities of Shinto and Buddhism in Japan.


source : 龍燈、龍灯、竜灯- wikipedia

santoo 山燈 Santo, "Lantern of a Mountain"
The "lanterns of the sea or mountain" do not light things clearly, they just seem to fade around in regions where few people live. They are venerated as Shinka, the divine fire.


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- - - - - ABC List of the prefectures :

.......................................................................... Ehime 愛媛県 ......................................

At the 老樟 old camphor tree of the 蕨岡 Warabioka family there was a divine light for seven days and seven nights. They called it 熊の権現の神火 the divine light of Kumano Gongen and venerated it at
Mount 篠山 Sasayama (1065 m ).
Years later the Tengu who lived at Sasayama came to live in this tree and played his tricks on the members of the Family. So one day the head of the home shot at him and the Tengu lost one of his wings. To get it back he had to promise never to play tricks around here any more. And to this day, the Tengu protects the Warabioka family.


.......................................................................... Okayama 岡山県 ......................................

Every year on the last day at the spooky time of ushi no koku 丑の刻 double-hour of the bull, there is a strange light coming down from a mountain called (竜が口山 / 龍之口山) 龍ノ口山 Tatsunokuchi, it looks like an arrow being shot from the mountain toward the sea.
People venerate it as they pass into the New Year.


.......................................................................... Shizuoka 静岡県  ......................................

Akiba shinka 秋葉神火 divine fire from Mount Akiba

At night a fire ball came flying from 秋葉山 Mount Akibasan to the open sea. People thought this was the グヒン Guhin Tengu of the mountain who went fishing. After that the local fishermen had a bad catch for three days.

. Akiba Gongen 秋葉権現 Tengu 天狗.
The Tengu 三尺坊 Sanjaku-Bo came to Mount Akiba Yama in Shizuoka prefecture riding on a white fox.
He became the god for calming fire.


.......................................................................... Okinawa 沖縄県 ......................................
国頭郡 今帰仁村 Nakijin

During a typhoon, fishermen were drifting, lost off the coast. Suddenly there was a shinka 神火 "divine light" and showed them the mountains and way to the harbour. So all came home safely to 仲宗根港 Nakasone Port.


.......................................................................... Shimane 島根県 ......................................


 Takibi no Yashiro 隠岐 焚火の社 The Takihi Shrine, Oki Province
Utagawa Hiroshige

Shooka Gongen 焼火権現 Shoka Gongen,Ooyama Gongen 大山権現 Oyama Gongen
ショウカゴンゲン, 焼火山大権現 Shoka Oyama Daigongen / Takuhi Gongen / Takubi Gongen

At night there shines a light, venerated as the sacred apparition of the deity Shoka Gongen.
This deity can calm down wind and waves and help ships in distress at sea. If fishermen pray to this Deity, he will show them a light to follow on the safe way to a harbour.

There is also a shrine
Takuhi Jinja 焼火神社(たくひじんじゃ)
Shimane Prefecture, Oki District, Nishinoshima 西ノ島町美田

After the Meiji restoration there was also a temple
Takuhisan Unjooji 焼火山雲上寺 Unjo-Ji.

The Shrine was called Takuhi no Yashiro (Takubi)、焼火社、焚火社、離火社
「たくひ(び)のやしろ」

The deity in residence is
Oohirume Muchi no Mikoto 大日孁貴尊 (おおひるめむちのみこと)
another name for 天照大神 Amaterasu no Omikami
Oohirume no Mikoto 大日孁尊(おおひるめのみこと)Ōhirume ("great-day-female") 
日女尊(ひるめのみこと)Hirume no Mikoto

Takuhiyama 焼火山 was also called Ooyama 大山 Oyama in former times.
It is 452 meters. The whole mountain is seen as a manifestation of the Deity.
- - - More in the WIKIPEDIA !


- quote -
Takuhi Shrine
The main shrine building is constructed partly inside a cave.



It is the oldest shrine in the Oki Islands, and is listed as an Important Cultural Property of Japan. Takuhi is dedicated to the deity of maritime safety, so people have come here for many hundreds of years to pray for safety at sea. The hike through the forest to the shrine is very nice, and the views of the islands are amazing.
- source : kankou-shimane.com -


- quote -
On Nishinoshima's highest mountain, Mt Takuhi, sits the island's oldest shrine, the Takuhi-Jinja.
The shrine's Honden (god's sanctuary) building was built into the mountain rock, according to legend the cave came about from the fire of one of the gods. It's dedicated to the god who protects seamen and used to function as a lighthouse for ships traveling to Oki. It also used to be a combined shrine and temple, but during the Meiji period when temples were outlawed the Takuhi shrine temple converted to a shrine. At over a thousand years old it's quite a venerable shrine with a respected history.
- source :en.japantravel.com/shimane / Rory Jackson -


. Wakahirume no Mikoto 稚日女尊 .
The name Wakahirume ("young-day-female") suggests a contrast to Ōhirume ("great-day-female"), another name for Amaterasu).

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- reference : nichibun yokai database 妖怪データベース -

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. Japanese legends and tales 伝説 民話 昔話 - Introduction .

- Yookai 妖怪 Yokai Monsters of Japan -
- Introduction -

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goshinka 御神火 Sake from Izu Oshima
The woman has a tsubaki 椿 camellia on her headband.


御神火の椿の島を恵方とす
goshinka no tsubaki no shima o ehoo to su

Camellia Island
with its Divine Fire shall be
my auspicious direction


原田青児 Harada Saiji




Tsubaki no Shima , Camellia Island, is Izu Oshima with its active volcano.
Izu Ōshima 伊豆大島
- - - More in the WIKIPEDIA !


. ehoo 恵方 Eho, auspicious direction of a New Year .

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ご神火は太古の闇を連れて来し
大谷早苗

御神火の火屑掃き寄す繞道祭
村上冬燕


凍む国の神火をきりし火燧臼
下田稔

天日を蔽ふ御神火や蜜柑むく
佐野青陽人

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. Join the friends on Facebook ! .

- #shinka #divinefire #godsfire #takuhi -
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