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【Iwafune Shrine】Spiritual Huge Rock Boat / Katano City, Osaka

【Iwafune Shrine】Spiritual Huge Rock Boat / Katano City, Osaka

【Iwafune Shrine】磐船神社 is a unique Shinto shrine in Osaka. The object of worship is a giant rock called Ama no Iwafune. “Ama” means “heaven” and “Iwafune” means “a rock boat.” Legend has it that when Nigihayahi no Mikoto (瓊瓊杵尊), a deity and a son of Susano-o no Mikoto(須佐之男命), descended to the earth, his boat metamorphosed into the rock and then it was deified. Nigihayahi no Mikoto (瓊瓊杵尊) is enshrined in the shrine though you can’t see the figure on the “rock boat.”

Susanoo (Japanese: 須佐之男 (スサノオ), also romanized as Susano-o, Susa-no-O, Susano'o, and SusanUwU), also known as Takehaya Susanoo no Mikoto (建速須佐之男命) and Kumano Ketsumiko no Kami at Kumano shrine, is the Shinto god of the sea and storms.

Ninigi-no-Mikoto (瓊瓊杵尊) Commonly called Ninigi, he was the grandson of Amaterasu. His great-grandson was Kan'yamato Iwarebiko, later to be known as Emperor Jimmu, first emperor of Japan.

Amaterasu (天照), Amaterasu-ōmikami (天照大神/天照大御神/天照皇大神), or Ōhirume-no-muchi-no-kami (大日孁貴神) is a deity of the Japanese myth cycle and also a major deity of the Shinto religion. She is seen as the goddess of the sun and the universe. 

Iwafune Shrine doesn’t have the main sanctuary called honden like other Shinto shrines. There is only a small building called haiden in front of Ama no Iwafune, and visitors worship here.  The height of the rock is about 12 meters, and the width is also about 12 meters. 

The Gankutsu-meguri (going through a holly narrow rock)

Since ancient times, Iwafune Shrine has been known as a place for ascetic practices. Here you can experience what is called gankutsu-meguri―there is a holy narrow rock cave, and you can go through it just like ancient people did. Gankutsu-meguri is said to be a learning experience to born again. It looks like a fun adventure but actually is a sacred practice and more dangerous than supposed, so be sure to follow the rules.

Wear white tasuki sash that you receive at the shamusho (the office of the shrine).
If your shoes have slick soles, change into zori straw sandals you receive at the shamusho(Shrine administration office).

It is for the ages of 10-74 only. You are not allowed to go into the cave after drinking alcohol. It is closed at night, when it rains or when the river in the cave has risen.
Also anyone is not allowed to go into the cave alone, so be sure to go there with someone. Before entering the cave, leave all your luggage at the shamusho. You can’t even carry small things like a cell phone. In the cave, check arrow marks drawn on the rocks while making your way. If the rocks are perfectly dry. you can go  through the cave relatively safely in 10 minutes.  If they are not dry after the rain, however, it must be more dangerous and your clothes can get dirty.

Beyond the cave, you will see what is believed to be Ama no Iwato, a rock cave in Japanese Mythology. (There are many other rock caves in Japan that are also believed to be Ama no Iwato.)  
After finishing the gankutsu-meguri, you can receive a certificate written on an amulet paper. You can see Ama no Iwato in the left down corner.

Acala (a guardian deity of Buddhism)

One more thing you can see in Iwafune Shrine is Acala (known as Fudo Myo-o in Japan). Acala is a guardian deity of Buddhism. It is interesting that you can see Acala in the Shinto shrine though the syncretism of Shinto and Buddhism is sometimes seen in other shrines and temples in Japan, too.

Regarding  the syncretism of Shinto and Buddhism, please make reference as follows,

【Iwafune Shrine】
  Address : 9-19-1 Kisaichi, Katano City, Osaka

【Iwafune Shrine】Jalan's Travel

For reference;
Masuda Iwafune (Huge Spiritual Roch)

【益田岩船】🌟(ますだのいわふね)奈良県橿原市白橿町 / パワースポット💫(1/2)Masuda Iwafune Rock, Nara, Japan.

[Amano Iwatate Shrine]

💫【天石立神社】(あまのいわたてじんじゃ)奈良県のパワースポット 🌌 奈良市柳生町🔸⭐️✨スピリチャル🔸⭐️✨