- Izumo taisha
- Or Izumo o-yashiro. The Grand shrine of Izumo, which enshrines a kami known popularly as daikoku-sama, i.e. O-kuni-nushi ('Great land'). It is popular among young couples for bestowing ryoen (good marriage). In the month of October by the lunar calendar all the kami (yao-yorozu no kami) from every part of Japan (with the exception of Ebisu who is deaf to the summons) are sent off with rites from their local shrine to gather at Izumo taisha. At Izumo this month is known as kami-ari-zuki, the month when the gods are present, while elsewhere in Japan it is kanna-zuki or kami-na-zuki, the month when the gods are absent. The arrival of the gods is marked by the Izumo taisha jinza-sai (enshrinement rite). The assembling kami are welcomed at the seashore by priests who conduct them to the shrine and offer rites. The kami are accommodated at Izumo in two long buildings until the 17th October (lunar calendar) then move on to the Sada jinja. Here they stay from November 20-25th (modern calendar) in an empty space enclosed by shimenawa and bamboo between the haiden and the honden before moving on to the Mankusen-no-yashiro on November 26th. The Izumo taisha is built in an archaic style of palace building known as taisha-zukuri. Like the Ise jingu the construction materials are plain wood and thatch. The present buildings date from 1744 although there was a serious fire in 1953 which necessitated rebuilding.
A Popular Dictionary of Shinto. Brian Bocking.