A Priest’s Calling

The October 25th issue of Jinja Shinpō included another column by Revd Mori, the female priest whose columns I have talked about several times in the past. This time, she wrote about how she nearly quit being a priest — or, more accurately, about how she did briefly quit. After finishing her training and her period working at the Imperial Palace, she went to work at a jinja (which she does not name). By the time she reached her seventh year there, however, she felt that she could not continue… Read More »A Priest’s Calling

Earthquake Scale

I am currently preparing for a future Patreon essay (or maybe two or three) on how the Great East Japan Earthquake on 11 March 2011 affected jinja in the region, and what has been done to help with the recovery.  I have mentioned some aspects of this on this blog, but it is sufficiently important to Shinto and contemporary Japan to merit essays of its own. (It is worth remembering that, for Japan, the earthquake and tsunami killed about as many people in twelve hours (18,425, if you total the… Read More »Earthquake Scale

Jinja and Wish-Fulfillment

Today’s post is based on an article in the Journal of Shintō Studies, an academic journal published by The Society of Shintō Studies at Kokugakuin University. I have mentioned it before; I am a member of the society, and thus get the journal. It is very interesting, but it is published twice a year, while Jinja Shinpō is published once a week, so you get rather more posts based on the latter. The article I want to pick up today is “The Law of Attraction: Deities and Shrines in Votive… Read More »Jinja and Wish-Fulfillment


The October 18th issue of Jinja Shinpō had a full-cover back page special on the opening of “The Sword Treasure Vault Kusanagi-Kan” at Atsuta Jingū in Nagoya. This was part of the jinja’s redevelopment to celebrate the accession of the new Tennō in 2019, and was the last part to be completed. It is a museum, displaying some of the swords that have been donated to the jinja over the centuries. The goshintai, the object housing the kami, at Atsuta Jingū is said to be Kusanagi no Mitsurugi, the sword… Read More »Kusanagi-Kan

Kneeling at Jinja

A few weeks ago, I reported on an article in Jinja Shinpō about how people were paying their respects at jinja. The author of that article had another one in the October 11th issue, looking further back, and starting from a line from a military song published during the Second World War, which refers to a mother visiting Yasukuni Jinja and kneeling to pay her respects and recite a Nenbutsu, which is a Buddhist prayer. According to the article, this was to emphasise her rustic background, as she did not… Read More »Kneeling at Jinja

A Year of Daily Visits

As of yesterday, I have visited Shirahata Hachiman Daijin to pay my respects every day for 365 days without missing a single one. Just thought I would use my blog to brag about that. I have been basically visiting the jinja every day for something like eight years now, but under normal circumstances I have overnight trips, or there are typhoons or snowstorms, and I have to miss occasional days. However, thanks to the pandemic and the lack of truly violent weather in Kawasaki over the last year, I have… Read More »A Year of Daily Visits