I visited Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine after watching the festival “Yagoro-don’s Hamakudari (Procession)” .
History and God
Above picture is the scenery around Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine. Beautiful landscape of agricultural fields spreads.
Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine is said to be build in 1025 (Heian Period).
Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine worships following Gods.
The shrine Emperor Ojin as the main God. Emperor Ojin is commonly known as the name of “Hachiman” in Japan.
The God is the guardian deity of birthplace and has protected the local people of the surrounding area of the shrine. Local people has respected the God for family safety, healthy life, business prosperity, crop richness, livestock prosperity and the like.
He is believed to be the legendary giant who lived in the region. He was the hero for local people and saved them from natural disasters such as floods. He is the God of health, long life, good luck and warding off evil.
I visited the shrine at the time of the shrine’s famous “Yagoro-don Hamakudari (procession)” Festival.
The festival is held on 3 November.
Many crowds gathered at the in front of the shrine gate.
They were waiting for the appearance of Yagoro-don.
Huge Yagoro-don (4.85m) appeared from the shrine!
Yagoro-don marches around the towns. The festival is very impressive!
Steps to Shrine
After watching Yagoro-don’s Hamakudari Festival I visited the Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine.
Main shrine building is located at the top of small hill. There were many visitors.
Main Shrine Building
Many visitors are in line to make prayers.
I washed my hands and mouth at Temizuya (following picture) before prayer.
Large shoes were put in front of the main shrine building.
I thought that the shoes must belong to Yagoro-don.
I found other shoes of Yagoro-don in front of the shrine office.
I walked around the shrine building after prayer.
The sacred camphor tree of the shrine was impressive.
Following place is called Yohaijo, or the place to pay respect to emperor’s residence in Tokyo and Ise Shrine in Mie Prefecture at the direction of east-northeast.
Ise Shrine worships Amaterasu which is the ancestral God of emperors.
Good Luck Fortunes
Many beautiful fortunes were sold at the shrine office.
This is the Ema fortunes (write your wish on their back and hung them at designated places of shrine).
Yagoro-don is depicted on them.
The Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine is said to have benefits of husbandry.
My family member runs a cattle farm and I bought the following shrine seal for the family.
I received a shrine seal of Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine.
Yagoro-don’s stamp is put on it. It has distinctive local taste.
Yagoro-don Festival on 3rd November
Travel Information of Iwakawa-Hachiman Shrine
About 10 minutes from Sueyoshi-Takarabe IC of Higashi-Kyushu Expressway by car.
Yagoro-don Festival (3rd November – 5th November)
5745, Iwagawa, Osumi-cho, Soo City