Kinkazan Island


Kinkazan Island - Ishinomaki

***** Location: Miyagi Prefecture
***** Season: See below
***** Category: Observance


Kinkasan (金華山; also Kinkazan)
is a small mountainous island at the tip of the Oshika Peninsula, not far from Sendai in Tohoku, Japan.

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Literally meaning "Golden Flower Mountain", its spiritual significance and the fact that the island used to be a site for a brief gold prospecting boom ensure a steady stream of visitors eager for some good fortune to rub off. Kinkasan is considered one of the three holiest places in Tohoku region, along with Dewa Sanzan and Osorezan. Today little remains except an impressive Shinto shrine devoted to the gods of wealth, Ebisu and Daikoku.

Women were actually banned on the island until the late 19th century, but today, for both sexes, an overnight stay is ideal for those seeking tranquility. According to legend, if you pay a visit to the shrine once a year for three consecutive years, you will have no financial difficulties for the rest of your life.

Koganeyama Shrine (黄金山神社)

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This shrine is the reason most Japanese come here. The shrine originally dates to the 8th century, but the present buildings are much newer and not particularly noteworthy. On the other hand, legend has it that those who visit the shrine three years in a row will become rich.

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Ths island is famous for its wild monkeys and

sika deer, Cervus nippon, on Kinkazan Island


shika tsunokiri 鹿角切り cutting the antlers of deer
May 12

Miyagi prefecture, Kinkazan (Kinkasan), shrine Koganeyama jinja

The purpose of the event is to cut off the deer's antlers. I'm not sure exactly why as nobody I asked seemed to know exactly. The best answer I got was so that it would soon be mating season and cutting the antlers prevents injuries to the male deer when they fight over females.

Basically a group of men (of varying ages) herd a number of deer into the arena, and then they close the gates. They wave long sticks at the deer herding them around and around the outside of the arena. As the deer run a number of the men throw some kind of rope trap device at the antlers.

If the rope catches on an antler they reel the deer in until a group of men swarm the deer (in this photo an over-eager man grabs the deer before the others arrive on the scene) and carry it to a mat (with pillow) and hold it down while the older man in Orange cuts off the Antlers. A young boy then parades the antlers before the crowd and then places them in a basket which is lifted out of the arena.

If the crowd wishes to purchase the antlers they can. However, they are quite expensive. They ranged in price from $100 - $300 dollars.
source : www.trekearth.com


Pilgrim's stamp book cover

Worldwide use

Things found on the way

Kinkazan Tsunami on March 2011

A man had escaped high up at Kinkazan island 金華山 , situated before Ishinomaki town and Ojika Peninsula..
He kept taking photos of the tsunami as it came into the inlet, from both sides at once, clashing in the middle in front of his eyes.
Even tsunami-experts have never seen this kind of document before.
It looked like a scene from a biblical movie.

. Kinkazan Tsunami on March 2011 .  


Kinkazan in Gifu 岐阜金華山

Mt. Kinka

(金華山, Kinka-zan), also known as Kinkazan,
is located in the heart of the city of Gifu, Gifu Prefecture, Japan, and rises to a height of 329 m (1,079 ft). Previously called Mt. Inaba (稲葉山 Inabayama), it has long served as the representative symbol of Gifu. It stands along the Nagara River, creating bountiful nature within the city. Though it is the most famous mountain in the city, Mount Dodo, to the north, is the tallest.

First built by the Nikaidō family during the Kamakura period, Gifu Castle atop Mt. Kinka has gone through many forms, with the current building being constructed in 1956.
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Related words

***** shika no tsunokiri 鹿の角切 (しかのつのきり)
cutting the horns of deer

kigo for late autumn

at Kasuga Shrine (春日大社, Kasuga-taisha) in Nara


Ishinomaki Kawabiraki 石巻川開き
"River Opening at Ishinomaki"

The Ishinomaki Kawabiraki Festival is held on August 1st and 2nd every year.
This festival celebrates Kawamura Magobei 川村孫兵衛 , a civil engineer and Samurai during the Edo Period, whose improvements to the Kitakami-gawa River helped Ishinomaki to develop and prosper.

On the first night of the two-day-festival there is a spectacular fireworks display; one of largest in northern Japan(, with about 15,000 separate rounds fired into the sky). During the festival there are many exciting events including the Magobeisen rowing race, and the Tairyo-odori dance parade, where Ishinomaki residents perform traditional, local dances in costume.
source : www.city.ishinomaki.lg.jp

Kawamura Magobei Shigeyoshi 川村重吉
(1575 - 1648)

The Ishinomaki Kawabiraki, or "River Opening" Festival, traditionally celebrates the city's prosperity.

3/11 victims mourned at Ishinomaki summer festival 2012

A century-old summer festival began in tsunami-hit Ishinomaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, on Tuesday.
The participants are also mourning the victims of last year's March 11th disaster.
Since last year, the festival has also been held to pray for the repose of the March 11th victims and the city's reconstruction.

About 50 Buddhist monks gathered at the mouth of the Kyukitakami river to chant sutras and recite the names of Ishinomaki residents who have died or remain missing.
15,000 paper lanterns bearing the names of victims were floated in the river. People gathered along the banks and prayed silently.

A woman who lost her uncle in the disaster and whose aunt remains missing says she wonders if her aunt may return from nowhere.
She added that 16 months have passed, but she feels that nothing has changed.

Events will be held on Tuesday on the theme of reconstruction to wrap up the 2-day festival.They include a parade by drummers from elementary and junior high schools and a firework display.
source : NHK world news July 31, 2012


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1 comment:

Gabi Greve said...

Legend from 石巻市 Ishinomaki 鮎川浜 Ayukawahama

Senninzawa no hebi 仙人沢の蛇 the serpent from Sennin Swamp
At the 金華山祭 Kinkasan Festival in May the 姉神 Elder Sister Deity from 網地島 Ajishima island turns into a huge serpent 大蛇 (竜蛇 "dragon serpent") and spits out the tide all night, swimming over to the Kinkasan island to help the 妹神 Younger Sister Deity from Kinkasan. Some villagers have even seen her swim. But those who see her will die.
She is also called the serpent from Sennin swamp.
sennin 仙人と伝説 Legends about Immortals