Lessons at Japanese Shrine (Shinto Prayer Manner)




A visit to Shrine

When you enter the shrine, you have to wash your hands, because Shinto religion hates impurity.

There is no place to dry your hands. So, it is wise to take handkerchief or towels when you visit shrine.

Wash Coins

Please remember to wash coins to before putting it in the coin box.praying to the God.

In this movie, I washed a 10 yen coin.

but it is better to put 5 yen coin because the Japanese pronunciation of “5 yen” is the same as that of “chance”.

After washing the coins, please walk to the Saisen Box.


Saisen Box

This is the box in which you put coins.


Please bow twice before you putting the coin into Saisen Box.

Then shake the rope and ring the bell.


In Shinto religions, you ring the bell in order to wake up Shinto Gods inside the shrine.

Shinto loves jolly sounds while Buddhism loves calmness and quite circumstance.

Please clap your hands twice to wake up the Gods!

Then close your eyes and make your prayer.

Please make a bow once after your prayer, then leave the place.


Consult an Oracle (Omikuji)

You can make your fortune told at the Shrine.

After paying money (usually 100 yen or so), please pull out one piece of papers from the box.

This paper tells about how lucky your fortune this year will be!

Japanese shrine oracles have following 6 levels of luckiness.you

1. 大吉 Dai-Kichi (Super Lucky!)

2. 吉 Kichi (Very Lucky)

3. 中吉 Chu-Kichi (Lucky)

4. 小吉 Sho-Kichi (OK, So so)

5. 凶 Kyo (not so good)

6. 大凶 Dai-Kyo (WORST!)

If you choose good one, please take the paper home as a good luck fortune. I usually keep it in my wallet.

If you choose bad one, please tie it to a branch of the tree as you see in the following picture, so that you will not take bad luck back to your home.




Shrine & Temple