I have the honor and pleasure of being in charge of this year’s “Historical Walk” at Kōgakkan University. As a theme, I chose the “Old Road of Kumano” (熊野古道), a World Heritage Site in Mie Prefecture. The photo here was taken from the top of the “Demon’s Castle” (鬼ヶ城) looking out over the “Seven-league Beach” (七里御浜), the location of Hana no Iwaya Shrine (花の窟神社), the gravesite of the deity Izanami-no-mikoto (伊弉冊尊). According to one of Japan’s oldest texts, she joined with the deity Izanagi-no-mikoto (伊弉諾尊) to create the Japanese islands and many deities, but died giving birth to the fire deity, Kagutsuchi-no-mikoto (軻遇突智尊). Hana no Iwaya is said to be one of the oldest shrines in the Shinto tradition.
We’ll visit historical sites associated with it from ancient archeological sites to ones from the last few decades. I’ve put together this itinerary, and I’ll give explanations that day in Japanese and English, so it’ll be a great opportunity for participants to think about the sites in both languages. I’ll link other posts to this page with photos and explanations over the next couple of weeks.
- Ochiai Tomb Mound Group 落合古墳群
- Iwade Castle 岩出城、Kayama Tomb Mound Group 蚊山遺跡
- Ōkasedera Ruins 逢（相）鹿瀬寺跡、Meki Pass 女鬼峠
- The Ruins of Shimomise Castle 下三瀬城跡、Misesaka Pass 三瀬坂峠
- Takihara Shrine 瀧原宮
- Daikō Shrine 大皇神社
- Kumano Kodō Mountain Passes 熊野古道の峠
- Kumano Kodō Center 熊野古道センター
- Onigajō 鬼ヶ城、Matsumoto Mountain Pass 松本峠道
- Hana no Iwaya Shrine 花の窟神社
- Owase Shrine 尾鷲神社