Meiji Shrine: grounds to ring in the year

Dec 24, 2015

Meiji Shrine: grounds to ring in the year

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As a relatively new place of worship, established less than a century ago in 1920, Meiji Shrine was originally based around the concept of wakonyōsai — a belief that treasured the Japanese "soul," while still embracing influences from the West. Its unusual omikuji, therefore, ...

Getting the year's first prayer in

Dec 24, 2015

Getting the year's first prayer in

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Whether we are Buddhists, followers of Shintoism or atheists, the first thing many Japanese do on ganjitsu (New Year’s Day) is go to their local shrine or temple for hatsumōde, a symbolic first visit of the year. If it’s not done on Jan. 1, ...

Tsunami zone volunteer becomes Shinto priest

Feb 6, 2015

Tsunami zone volunteer becomes Shinto priest

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When caregiver Kazutoshi Fujimoto first visited the town of Yamamoto, Miyagi Prefecture, he was volunteering because he had heard the recovery from the March 2011 quake and tsunami was going slow. The decision turned out to be a life-changing one because it led him ...

Osprey drills get nod in Gunma

Jun 20, 2014

Osprey drills get nod in Gunma

The municipal assembly in Shinto, Gunma Prefecture, has approved holding military exercises involving the MV-22 Ospreys flown by the U.S. Marine Corps. The municipality is home to the Ground Self-Defense Force’s Somagahara training range. The resolution, passed Thursday, says Shinto will accept joint drills ...