Katte Shrine located in Yoshinoyama, Yoshino-cho, Nara Pref. is one of the eight Myojin shrines in Yoshino. It enshrines Oyama Tsumi no Kami and Konohanasakuya-hime no Mikoto. Legend has it that in 672, when Prince Oama (later enthroned as Emperor Tenmu), who had stayed in Yoshino and gathered an army to battle with the crown prince, was playing the Japanese harp in front of the hall at this temple, a heavenly maiden appeared and showed him a lucky omen.
It is also said that in 1185, when Shizuka Gozen, who parted with Minamoto no Yoshitsune in Mt. Yoshino, was caught by the pursuers, she performed elegant dance in front of the hall at this shrine to make time for her husband to escape.
The main hall was once destroyed by fire and restored in 1776, but in 2005 it was burned down again by the fire of suspicious origin. Presently, only a part of wooden structure remains and there is little possibility of the restoration of this important cultural property.
Mishima Taisha Shrine is located in Omiya-cho, Mishima City, Shizuoka Pref. It enshrines Oyama Tsumi no Mikoto and Tsumihayae Kotoshironushi no Kami, who are collectively called Mishima Daimyojin. The time of its foundation is unknown, but it is said that the shrine was originally located on Miyakejima Island but was transferred later from place to place including Shimoda, Shirahama Beach and Ohito-cho before being moved to the present place. In Engishiki (codes and procedures on national rites and prayers) in the Heian period (794-1192), it is referred to as “Izu Mishima Shrine located in Kamo county (the southern part of Izu Peninsula), Izu province.” At some time later than the middle of the Heian period, present Mishima Taisha Shrine was built near the Kokufu (provincial government office) as a Shingu (a new shrine), to which the deities were transferred. Wakamiya Hachiman Shrine was originally located at this place; however, it is said, the deity of Wakamiya Hachiman yielded his territory to Mishima Myojin. Minamoto no Yoritomo had worshipped Mishima Taisha since he was exiled to Izu province and continued to pay reverence to it after he established the Kamakura Shogunate. The old calendar issued by this shrine in the Middle Ages was known all over the nation as “Mishima Calendar.”
Fujisan Hongu Sengen Taisha Shrine located in Miya-cho, Fujinomiya City, Shizuoka Pref. is an old shrine that had been worshipped by generations of warriors. The enshrined deity is Konohana no Sakuyahime no Mikoto. This is the head shrine of all the 1300 Sengen shrines in Japan and the center of Mt. Fuji worship. Mt. Fuji itself is considerd as the sacred body of god and the back shrine is located at the top of Mt. Fuji. The origin of the shrine dates back to 27 B.C., when Asama no Okami, the holy spirit of Mt. Fuji was enshrined at the foot of the mountain. In the later periods, this volcanic god came to be identified with Konohana no Sakuyahime, a princess in ancient myths. At the present time, her husband, Amenigishiku Ninigishi Amatsuhikoho no Ninigi no Mikoto, and her father, Oyamatsumi no Mikoto are also enshrined. The shrine possesses the land above the 8th station of Mt. Fuji.
Murayama Sengen Shrine is located in Murayama, Fijinomiya City, Shizuoka Pref. The enshrined deities are Oyamanegi no Mikoto and Kamosawa Hime no Mikoto. It is said that En no Ozuno, the founder of mountain practice, transferred the deity from Oshoji Temple in Mt. Fuji in the 7th century. According to another account, it was built in 702 and Sakanoue no Tamuramaro visited to worship the temple and made a donation. The place is considered to have been the training ashram for the Murakami mountain practitioners, who worshipped and trained themselves in Mt. Fuji. In the old days, as the shrine was on the path to climb Mt. Fuji, it thrived and there were hundreds of priests’ living quarters. But it declined since a new road was built. At the present time, only Hondo (the main hall) and Dainichi Hall remain. In the precinct stands prefecturally designated protected species of huge cedar and gingko trees. The shrine is now at a height of 500 m above sea level at the southern foot of Mt. Fuji. From a picture drawn in 1609, it seems that the surrounding landscape hasn’t changed very much.
Yamazumi Shrine located in Yamazumi, Mizukubo-cho, Hamamatsu City, Shizuoka Pref. is a shrine with a long history of Wolf Worship. It is said that the shrine was founded in 709, when Oyamazu no Kami, or generally called Yamazumi Daigongen, was invited here from Iyo province (present-day Matsuyama Pref.). Enshrined together are Kotosakao no Mikoto, Izanami no Mikoto and Hayatamao no Mikoto. Yamazumi Shrine is famous for its wolf cult. When Tokugawa Ieyasu took refuge in a mountain to escape from the attack of the Takeda clan, the mountain suddenly began to quake and he heard great roaring of a wolf, which drove away the enemy. Because of this, it is said, Ieyasu paid great respect for this shrine. Around 1700, Yamazumi Daizennosuke, the chief priest of this shrine, planted 360,000 cedar and zelkova trees in as long as 40 years to improve the rough mountain. Now Mt. Yamazumi is full of fine trees. In the precinct are two sacred cedar trees, which are over 1,200 years old.
In spring, visitors are able to enjoy walking through a pink corridor formed by a total of 165 cherry blossom trees blooming on both banks of the Kannonji River.
Most of the trees are 40 to 90 years old while some exceed this. The contrast between the snowy Bandai Mountains is beautiful, and the Inawashiro cherry trees blossom later than usual for cherry blossom trees.
The blossom petal blizzards of May are splendid, and one may feel the presence of spring after walking through the corridor of blossoms while viewing the grand landscape of the Bandai Mountains and Lake Inawashiro.
A highly recommended spot for viewing the cherry blossom is from Yanagibashi Bridge near Ooyamazumi Shrine. Additionally, visitors can enjoy the blossoms of a 130 year old weeping cherry tree with a trunk circumference of 2.8m at Kannonji Temple. A Cherry Blossom Festival is also held during mid- through late April.
Oyama-Afuri Shrine is located in Oyama, Isehara City, Kanagawa Prefecture.
The shrine's main deity, the god Oyama, is originally a mountain god, but also a sea god. In olden times, during droughts, sea people prayed to Oyama for rain.
The deity in the subsidiary shrine, Takaokami, is popularly known as a Tengu (long-nosed goblin), one of the 8 major Tengu.
The shrine was said to have been built in the reign of the Sujin Emperor. In the fourth year of the Tenpyoshoho period (752), Roben built Afuri-oyama temple, a Buddhist place of worship, yet a part of the shrine.
After the Middle Ages, Oyama Temple became popular as a center of esoteric Buddhism and many samurai worshiped here. In the Edo period, groups of Oyama commoners visited and worshiped here, too.
In the Meiji period, Buddhist and Shinto gods were separated, and Oyama temple was rename Afuri Shrine, its original name.
Oyama-Afuri Shrine is a commoners shrine that many people have been visiting since the Edo period.