Meiji Shrine and Princess Mononoke

Hi there. How are you doing? Strolling around Tokyo is so exciting and every time I go visit there, I make a trip to various spots and I cherish my good old memories that I used to live there 2 decades ago. I want to keep posting interesting articles for those who live in Tokyo area or who used to live there or who are planning to go visit there. I hope you enjoy my blog and get some useful tips.


One severely hot August afternoon, I dropped by Meiji Shrine where enshrines Meiji Emperor and Meiji Empress.


The vast premises was like a deep forest and it was surrounded with some cool air. It was indeed a different world. The place reminded me a stage of world famous movie “Princess Mononoke” which Hayao Miyazaki conducted. The readers of this blog might have seen the movie as well, and if you wish to actually see and experience the atmosphere, I highly recommend to pay a visit to the Meiji Shrine.


According to a theory from an ancient era, it is believed a shrine represents a body of a woman. And a road that leads to the main sanctuary is considered to be the birth canal. I went through 3 torii (a gateway to a shrine), to reach the main sanctuary. As I was walking by, I was thinking about a belief of Shintoism that believes 8 million gods exist. 8 million gods worship is same as animism; spirit worship. It respects a teaching that there exists gods in any creatures. I was thinking this or that and I assumed that the ultimate spirit that Shintoism honors is negative ion that trees are emitting. People might think it is somehow so godly in a sense. This is just my guess and I don’t know any background, though…


Along the way, there are hundreds of Sake, Japanese rice wine barrels. They are from all across Japan to present Meiji Emperor. The view was just stunning.


During Meiji Era (1868-1912) when Meiji Emperor was enthroned, Japan became wildly westernized. It is described as “civilization blooming period” and Japanese welcomed western things and cultures. Interestingly, a propaganda of “Japanese spirit with western talent” was highly advocated and we never choose to abandon our Japanese spirit. I found a sign on a post that says Meiji Emperor also changed his outfit from kimono to western clothes and enjoyed western cuisines and wine. It was a very interesting knowledge to learn.

また明治天皇が即位していた明治時代(1868-1912) は文明開化の到来の元、和魂洋才が叫ばれ積極的に洋式のものが取り入れられ始めた時代です。明治天皇も着物から洋装に変え、積極的に洋食やワインを好んで召し上がっていたとの立て札もあり、非常に興味深い学びを得ました。

And this is the main sanctuary.


There is a “godly tree” beside the sanctuary and it is believed a god is living inside. There are many votive tablets around the tree.


Seeing is believing. Even if you know some words or concepts about a certain thing, you really learn much more when you actually go visit the place. Tokyo is gigantic and there are so many mesmerizing charms in this metropolis. Please make a trip to Tokyo and see things from many different angles. Each and every aspect of Tokyo is so unique and different. There are full of wonders in this capital that Japan is proud of.


That’s all for today. We are so excited to host the next Tokyo Olympics Games! Blessings to each one of you!



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