Sunday, March 23, 2014

Awashima Shrine: Nagasaki Pefecture

Awashima Shrine in Nagasaki is probably one of the most interesting and unique Shrines that you will ever come upon in Nagasaki let alone all of Japan.  Many women visit this shrine to make prayers related to female matters such as childbirth and fertility as it is believed to have special powers an a lucky charm to those who want children or those that are having problems getting pregnant.

Awashima Shrine was built in 1812 so in a sense compared to other Shrines in Nagasaki it is a rather young and hasn't got a long and rich history but it is what the Shrine stands for and that people believe in its powers which makes it such a popular and well visited place.  The Shrine has a series of small Torii's which are the gate entrances to the shrines.  Most shrine gate entrances are measured in metres and I mean 5 to 10 meters in height, however the Awashima Shrines Torii's are measured in centimeters and not meters.

If one passes through these gate entrances it is said that it will assure a smooth and safe delivery for mother and child once she becomes pregnant and will allow women who are having problem to become pregnant in the future as well if all 3 gate entrances can be passed through.

The smallest Torii is only 27 centimeters high but I can tell you that it looks so much smaller than this. In fact, I could hardly get my head through the gate entrance let along my large frame and shoulders as well as other parts of my body.  Whilst I was there I didn't actually see anyone pass through these Torii's but I have been told by many people that it is possible and done on a regular basis.  Now that is something that I need to see for myself in order to believe something that I honestly think is impossible!

Please check out Awashima Shrine on a map:

Please click on the pics below to enlarge:

Looks like a rather usual shrine but it has an edge over the others!

Passing through the Torii's will promote fertility

It has some of the smallest Torii's you will ever see!

The average western woman has no chance to pass through!

Tiny gap

The 3 Torii's are actually different sizes

Peck a boo

Please check out the Awashima Shrine Nagasaki in the video below:

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