Feb 27, 2015

A Shinto Buddhist site.

 As I approached the tree, I realized that the tree had Shinto decorations but the statue next to it was Buddhist. The statue represent Dainichi Nyorai and here is what the Wikipedia article has to say about this god/Buddha amalgamation.

"Dainichi (lit. "Great Sun") is worshipped as the supreme, primordial sun Buddha and also appears as the central figure of the Five Wisdom Buddhas.[7][8] Under the syncretic doctrine of honji suijaku, the Shinto sun goddess Amaterasu was considered a manifestation of Dainichi Nyorai.[8] The term Nyorai (lit. "thus-come one") is an epithet for the enlightened Buddhas that occupy the highest rank in the Japanese Buddhist pantheon.[9] In the Mandala of the Two Realms, the principle mandala for ritual activity and contemplation in Shingon Buddhism, Dainichi Nyorai appears in the centre of both the Diamond Realm and the Womb Realm.[10] In the former, as defined by the Dainichi Sutra, Dainichi represents the "metaphysical presence that embodies reason"; in the latter, as defined by the Diamond Peak Sutra, Dainichi represents the "epistemological presence that embodies wisdom"."

This branch of Buddhism is called esoteric and as pointed out there was a period when Shinto and Buddhism came together as a single religion. This has changed as the government left the picture but places like this still retain the mix.
Here is a shimenawa tied around the knots in a branch of the tree.

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