Nov 15, 2014

Sakuta Jinja

 I have never seen anything like this before. Many shrines have a number of torii that you pass through as you near the building but this one has a straw rope with hanging ends stretched between two poles. You pass under it to reach the building with the altar. Maybe it is some sort of barrier to keep out impurities. Shinto is very much about purifying things.
Once passed the straw barrier the shrine is guarded by two stone statues of lions. I assume that the knowledge of lions came to Japan along the Silk Road. As early as the 4th century, objects were being imported from the Mediterranean region, so I would expect information as well as objects were transmitted along the various routes.

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