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"En-musubi furin" of Hikawa shrine

Article writtenJul 28th,2018
Jul. 13th,2018
A visit to Hikawa shrine in Kawagoe, known as a god of matchmaking.
Recommend viewing in landscape mode.
Recommend viewing in landscape mode.

Hikawa shrine is located in Kawagoe city, known as "Koedo (Small Edo)", in Saitama prefecture. Since the shrine's main deity are 2 pairs of gods who are couples, Susano-no-mikoto and Kushinadahime-no-mikoto, Ashinazuchi-no-mikoto and Tenazuchi-no-mikoto, it is known as a deity of "En-musubi (matchmaking)". Onamuchi-no-mikoto, who is known as a deity of matchmaking in Izumo-taisha shrine, is also deified and since these 5 gods are family, the Hikawa shrine is also worshipped as a deity of the well-being of the family and couple harmony.

Hikawa shrine is said to be founded during the Kofun period in 541. After Kawagoe castle was built nearby in 1457, it has long been worshipped as a tutelary deity of the castle town. Kawagoe Hikawa Festival also known as "Kawagoe Festival" is the "Reitaisai (an annual festival of the shrine)" of Hikawa shrine.

There are more than 200 Hikawa shrines based on the cult of Hikawa around Tokyo and Saitama, and the Hikawa shrine in Omiya, known as the grand head shrine of Hikawa shrines, is especially famous. In order to separate it from these shrines, it is often called Kawagoe Hikawa shrine.

"En-musubi furin" is held every summer from 2014. A "furin" is a traditional wind chime or wind bell. About 2000 "furin"s with strips of wood with wishes written on are hung throughout the shrine.

"En-musubi Furin" this year (2018) is held from Jul. 7th to Sep. 9th.

A visit to Hikawa shrine, where you can hear the sound of the wind carrying peoples wishes.

01

Hikawa shrine is located a little far from the main area known as "Koedo" in Kawagoe.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

02

Hikawa shrine is just around the corner.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

03

Going through the first torii, many "furin"s are hung here.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

04

The colorful "furin"s are made of hand made glass.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

05

More than 2000 "furin"s are hung throughout the shrine.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

06

From inside the shrine. This is the second torii. These "furin"s are hung between the first and second toriis.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

07

The worship hall right in front on the second torii. The main hall, behind the worship hall, was built in 1849.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

08

The shrine office on the left. Charms and "goshuin" are available here.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

09

"Goshuin book" of Hikawa shrine.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

10

"Goshuin" of Hikawa shrine.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

11

Special "goshuin" which is only available during "En-musubi furin".
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

12

"Furin"s can be seen under the roof edge of the shrine office too.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

13

Dance hall where "Kagura (ritual dances)" are performed.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

14

Kakinomotonohikomaro shrine, an auxiliary shrine next to the shrine office.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

15

On the left of the worship hall is the Yasaka shrine, another auxiliary shrine. It was originally built inside the Edo castle in 1637 and was moved to the current location in 1872.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

16

The building behind the red torii is the Hikawa kaikan. It is a wedding hall of the shrine.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

17

Sacred water drawn from a water vein under the shrine. The stone on the left is "Inu-iwa (Meaning: a stone that looks like a dog)". Since dogs have many babies it has been told it attracts good fortune for childbirth.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

18

The sacred water flows as a small river where "Hitogata-nagashi", a ritual to expel impurities, can be performed.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

19

This "Otorii", big torii, is 15m high. It was built in 1990 and is made of ceder.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

20

The "shingaku", carring the name of the shrine. The words were written by Kaishu Katsu.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

21

The shrine seen from under the "Otorii".
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

22

"Furin"s under the "Otorii".
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

23

Clear colored "furin"s are cool looking.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

24

Near the "Otorii" is the Gokoku shrines, an auxiliary shrine, dedicated to those who died in the wars.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

25

"Kumobishi", a diamond shaped cloud which is the emblem of the shrine, can be seen on lanterns hung under the roof of the corridor.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

26

Many colorful "furin"s are hung next to the worship hall too.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

27

The shape of the "furin"s differ a little and the tone colors differ too.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

28

"Tanzaku"s, strips of wood with wishes written on, are attached to the "furin"s.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

29

The "Furin-kairo", a corridor of wind chimes, on the right side of the worship hall and main hall.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

30

It is said that the wind carries people's wishes and feelings. The sound of the "furin"s tell you the presence of the wind carring peoples wishes to the deities.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

31

The main hall can be seen through the lattice work.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

32

Behind the main hall is a pair of "goshinboku"s, sacred trees. Camphor trees estimated to be 600 years old.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

33

It is said that you should walk around the trees in the shape of the figure eight.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

34

"Furin"s can be seen in the forest behind the main hall too.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

35

On the left of the main hall is the "Ema tunnel", a corridor where "ema"s, wooden plaques which you write your wishes on, are hung.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

36

Next to the "Ema tunnel" there are 21 auxiliary shrines.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

37

Nenogongensha, which shoes can be seen dedicated, is a deity of legs. Itsukushima shrine and Mizu shrine.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

38

Auxiliary shrines such as Raiden shrine, Mitsumine shrine and Itsukushima shrine can be seen.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

39

Where you tie fortune slips. "Tai-mikuji"s which cannot be seen in other shrines are hung here too.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

40

"Ichinen-antai-mikuji (Meaning: peaceful year fortune slip)" which you fish up with a fishing rod. "Tai" is a sea bream, which is said to bring good luck.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

41

"Ichinen-antai-mikuji" has a fortune slip inside.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

42

"Ai-tai-mikuji", playing with the words "Aitai (会いたい, Meaning: want to meet)" and "Tai (鯛, meaning: sea bream)".
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

43

"Ai-tai-mikuji" has a love fortune slip inside.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

44

The illustration map of the shrine.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

45

The first torii of Hikawa shrine seen from the other side of the street.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

46

Leaving Hikawa shrine.
2018, Jul. 13th Kawagoe,Saitama

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