Mar 15, 2018
Yutoku Inari Shrine enshrines a god of food, clothing, and shelter, and is one of the Three Grand Inari Shrines of Japan. It was established in 1687, and draws three million visitors annually. People here pray for success in business, family prosperity, big fish catches, and traffic safety. The “honden” (main hall of the shrine) in magnificently vivid vermilion and the dignified appearance of “kagura-den” (hall of Shinto music and dance) leave you with a lasting impression.The shrine holds events almost every month, starting with the New Year Festival, followed by the Setsubun Festival, the Spring Grand Festival, the Sekiheki Shrine Grand Festival, the Rice-planting Festival, and so on. The biggest one among them is the Fire-making Ceremony held on December 8 during the Autumn Grand Festival, starting at sunset and continuing into the middle of the night. The participants express their gratitude for a good harvest, and also offer prayers to console the spirits of the dead. As “taimatsu” torches are lit and some bamboos piled up on the ground set alight, the gathered crowd cheers. This ritual has been held since the establishment of the shrine and its purpose is said to be to reactivate the power of the sun at the time when that power is considered to have gotten weak, and to offer prayers for the coming of spring. Because the flame used in the event is believed to have the power to purify the human body as well as the sins people commit unconsciously, some people also hold close to the fire a photo of someone who cannot come to the event on that day. There is also a museum on the spacious precinct housing various treasures and valuable items such as Japanese swords and art works. Flowers in season and maple leaves in autumn here are well known for their beauty, and visitors can find enjoyment all year around.
Yutoku Inari Shrine
* This is the information as of June, 2017
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