When you walk over the Uji Bridge at Naigū (inner shrine) of Ise Jingū, the Sando path
turns towards the right. Instead of going on the Sando main path, if you go straightforward from the bridge, there is another path that takes you to Koyasu Jinjya (the land god of Naigū) and Ooyamatsumi Jinjya (the father god of the land god of Naigū).
The enshrined god’s name of Koyasu Jinjya is Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto (木花咲耶姫命.) The father god that is enshrined in Ooyamatsumi Jinjya is a guardian god of Mt.Kamiji, the mountain and the forest area of upper Isuzu River. I have introduced a photo of this god’s appearance in my recent photo book. My psychic sense tells me that Ooyamatsumi is Susanoo. And Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto is Susanoo’s daughter. This means that Naigū stands on the ground that is Susanoo’s daughter’s land. And Susanoo is standing right behind the main shrine in a form of a mountain.
There is an interesting legend about this. Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto was the wife of the grandson (Ninigi) of Amaterasu-Ohomikami, the Sun Goddess. Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto also had an older sister called Iwanaga-hime who looked like a rock and not so pretty.
Ninigi falls in love with the younger and beautiful sister, Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto and asks her father Ooyamatsumi (Susanoo) if he could take her as his bride. Susanoo feels bad for the older sister and tells Ninigi to marry both of them. However, Ninigi refuses to take the older sister and just marry the beautiful Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto. Susanoo was furious and said, “He shall a have a short life for only taking the beautiful one as his wife. ” This is how eternal youth and immortality was broken. This is how we humans started to become mortal and experience death.
When Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto got pregnant, her older sister Iwanaga-hime became very sad. She said, “If Ninigi the son of the sun goddess had taken me as his wife, I would have brought out a child who is like a rock like my name and he would have had an eternal life. But instead he had chosen my sister. Like her name, the child will have a short life as ephemeral as the flowers.”
This was the beginning of a self-centered mind. The more egoistic the human’s became the more short living they had become. There is another story about the pregnancy of Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto. After they got married, on the first night she became pregnant. Ninigi became suspicious and told her that it was not his child and that she must have had an affair prior to their marriage. In order to prove her innocence, Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto sets fire in a small shack and gave birth to three children in the fire. If she wasn’t innocent she would have burnt to death.
Since this legend was told, people started to worship Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto as the god of birth and safe delivery.
Even she knew that her children would have ephemeral lives, she still wanted to give life to them. This came from her strong motherhood, having hopes and not giving up. There is a teaching in this story that we humans should never give up and have hopes for a better future.
At Koyasu Jinjya where Konohanasakuya-hime-no-mikoto is worshipped, many parents donate torii gates in hopes for their children. There were wishes written on the torii poles. (as shown on the photo in my book, personal wishes would create such odd atmosphere) This was just like what you would see at an Inari Jinjya. I was shocked. And asked the lady at the store. “How long has been this been going on? “ She said, “maybe this past five or six years.” It shows that we have been experiencing a very difficult time. Parents are really worried about their children. They have no idea how they can help and come here to cry on Kami’s shoulder. But in truth, it is always better to send gratitude rather than asking for help. The energy of gratitude would bring much more power to help your children and your family.
Thank you for letting us live
I would like to spread the Gratitude Awareness towards ancestral spirits and everything around us so 5% of the world population will start acting on it on a daily basis.