The One about Hatonomorihachiman Shrine in Shibuya

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Located near Meiji Jingu Baseball Stadium is a shrine known as Hatonomorihachiman Shrine.

Established in 860 AD, the shrine built and named after the forest originally in the location, was created under the request of the villagers, so a Goshintai (an object worshiped and housed in a Shinto Shrine which contains the spirit of a deity) was enshrined at the smaller shrine (hokora) and it would become known as Hatanomori Hachiman gu.

At this location, one can see one of the oldest Fujizuka Mounds (mounds made in the image of Mt. Fuji), so you walk a small uphill climb to the top and give your blessings to Mt. Fuji.   And those who travel and visit to worship Mt. Fuji, have now come to this shrine to show their respects.

It was a bit of a surprise to go inside Hatonomorihachiman Shrine.  For one, there is a big art piece of people climbing on a large mountain and then you see the orange gates that you typically see in locations such as Fushimi Inari Shrine. Also, similar to shrines that are on top of a mountain, there is a faux elevated slope as well that emulates the climb to Mt. Fuji.

But that’s what makes up the charm of this shrine, it has a little bit of everything and judging by the way people were sitting and hanging out, it seems like it’s also a convenient rest area for those who walk from Meiji Jingu Stadium or Meiji Jingu Shrine as it is a walk to get from one side to the other.

Nevertheless, if you are near Meiji Jingu Stadium or even near the olympic gymnasium, definitely give Hatonomorihachiman Shrine a chance!



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Dennis A. Amith