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The Native Place Tour of The Tale of Genji / Vol. 6

File:Naiku 01.JPG
("Naikū, Ise Shrine")

This time taking up herewith Amida-ji Temple and Ise.
As you might know, Ise Grand Shrine (伊勢神宮 Ise Jingū) is a Shinto shrine dedicated to goddess Amaterasu-ōmikami, located in the city of Ise in Mie prefecture, Japan. Officially known simply as Jingū (神宮, lit. "The Shrine"), Ise Jingū is in fact a shrine complex composed of a large number of Shinto shrines centered on two main shrines, Naikū (内宮) and Gekū (外宮).
The Inner Shrine, Naikū (also officially known as "Kotai Jingu"), is located in the town of Uji-tachi, south of central Ise City, and is dedicated to the worship of Amaterasu-ōmikami. The Outer Shrine, Gekū (also officially known as "Toyouke Daijingu"), is located about six kilometers from Naikū and dedicated to Toyouke no ōmikami, the deity of agriculture and industry. Besides Naikū and Gekū, there are an additional 123 Shinto shrines in Ise City and the surrounding areas, 91 of them connected to Naikū and 32 to Gekū.
Ise Jingu's Inner Shrine, Naikū, has a national treasure in its possession. Purportedly the home of the Sacred Mirror, the shrine is arguably one of Shinto's holiest and most important sites. Access to both sites is strictly limited, with the common public allowed to see little more than the thatched roofs of the central structures, hidden behind four tall wooden fences. The High Priest or Priestess of Ise Shrine must come from the Japanese Imperial Family, and is responsible for watching over the Shrine.

Amida-ji Temple

Founded by Danzei in 1609, Amida-ji Temple is situated in Ohara, north of Kyoto.
Amidaji temple Chinese gate
(The Chinese gate at Amidaji temple.)

The temple's principal image is of Danzei and its seated Amida Nyorai sculpture is an Important Cultural Property.
Amidaji temple
(Amidaji Temple's hondo.)

(Stone carving of Jizo at Amidaji Temple.)

Ise Grand Shrine

The Grand Shrine at Ise is the centre of the imperial branch of Shinto, where the sun goddess Amaterasu is enshrined. In The Tale of Genji, the Rokujo Lady's daughter becomes High Priestess of the Ise Shrine.
Ise Shrine
(The outer shrine's pond at Yamada no Hara.)

Located at Yamada no Hara, Ise's outer shrine is consecrated to Toyouke Okami, the Abundant Food Great Divinity. In 1291, the author of The Confessions of Lady Nijo visited the large pond beside the shrine and was reminded of Saigyo's poem:

Though I cannot hear them now
This is certainly the place for cuckoo -
This grove of cedar
At Yamada no Hara

(An unpainted torii marks the entrance of the outer shrine.)
File:Naiku 02.JPG
("Steps leading to the main Shrine (Naikū)")
File:Mishine-no-mikura 02.JPG

The location of "Ise Grand Shrine" by Google Map is as follows.

View Larger Map

By TS on Aug 16, 2011
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tag : Genji, Murasaki Shikibu



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Author:T. SATOH