"...any being whatsoever which possesses some eminent quality out of the ordinary, and is awe-inspiring, is called Kami.”
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March 15, 2018
From Merged Shrines
Kama Jinja 竃神社
Annual Festival: The Friday, Saturday, and Sunday immediately preceding May 15
There is no documentary evidence as to when this shrine was founded, but as it is mentioned in the Shinpen and its betto-ji was Chōshō-ji (長勝寺, Tōkyō-to, Ōta-ku, Chūō 6-6-5, said to have been founded in 1646) it has probably been in existence since at least the mid-Edo Period. In the past it has been known by various names, including Shohachiman-Gū (正八幡宮) and Kaunhachiman-Gū (家運八幡宮); the present name was adopted in 1868 along with the Shin-butsu Bunri.
There are two, unauthenticated, theories about who the shrine was named after. The first candidate is Ōta Yasusuke (太田康資), a 16th century samurai whose fief the territory was, and who was venerated as its tutelary deity. The second is Ōta Dōkan, who is said to have considered the site as a possible location for Edo Castle.
The shrine was basically destroyed in the firebombing of May 24, 1945, but its shintai (sacred body of the kami) had been moved to Chōshō-ji and escaped damage. The shintai is a
wooden figurine of Hachiman Daibosatsu wearing full Japanese court dress with an inscription on its back by Nasu no Yoichi. He was a samurai who fought alongside the Minamoto in the Genpei War and the Hachiman Daibosatsu is said to be his mamori-honzan, "a treasured object kept from birth to death."
In 1953 the prayer hall was rebuilt and in 1994 the main hall was rebuilt as a ferro-concrete building.
About 1.2 kms away from Nishi-Magome Station. There are 63 stairs on the sandō leading up from the torii, and given the way the jinja overlooks the city it is easy to see why it was considered as a potential site for Edo Castle. The koma-inu in front of the prayer hall date to 1901. The shrine is now a kenmusha of Kami-shinmei-tenso Jinja in Shinagawa. Starting with the torii there are purple banners emblazoned with the slogan "一願必中" (ichiganhicchu) at various places in the shrine. This was the personal slogan of Nasu no Yoichi and can be translated as "through the power of prayer nothing is impossible."
(Click on images to expand them)