April 13, 2009
by Hajime Yozaki; Naoko Iseki
~If you want to end a bad relationship and find a good relationship~
Yasui Shrine is located near Kiyomizu Temple, Yasaka Shrine, and Maruyama Park. This shrine is well known among Japanese who wish to end bad relationships and find good relationships. It is dedicated to Emperor Sutoku, Oomono Nushinokami, and Yorimasa Minamoto.
The shrine’s history began in the era of the 38th Emperor, Tenchi (668-671 AD). Kamatari Fujiwara built a temple called the Fuji Temple, because he planted wisterias that are fuji in Japanese, and prayed for the success of his family Takamasa and for his descendants.
The 75th Emperor, Sutoku, liked the wisterias very much. He restored the temple so that Empress Karasumadono could live there. However, in 1156 Emperor Sutoku was defeated in the Hogen War and went into hiding in Sanuki, which is now part of Kagawa prefecture. There he committed suicide.
After the death of Emperor Sutoku, Kyoto, which was the capital in those days, suffered from diseases, fires, and the death of Yoshitomo Minamoto, who was Sutoku’s enemy in the Hogen War. Many people in Kyoto believed that the calamities came from the curse of Emperor Sutoku. Emperor Goshirakawa was afraid of the curse, and so he built a Komei-in Kansho Temple in order to honor Emperor Sutoku. This shrine is the origin of Yasui Shrine.
The temple was burned in the Onin War. However, in 1695, a shrine located near Uzumasa was re-located to the present location, and prayers were offered for Emperor Sutoku, Oomono Nushinokami, and Yorimasa Minamoto. After the Meiji Restoration in 1869, the temple changed its name to Yasui Shrine.
1. End a bad relationship and find a good relationship
Emperor Sutoku went into hiding in Sanuki. That’s the reason why this shrine was established — as a place where we can pray. Especially, this shrine is said to cut off bad relationships that prevent men and women from being happy and from marrying. This is because Emperor Sutoku’s wife died in the Hogen War. His sadness made the benefit.
You can cut off all types of bad relationships, not only relationships between men and women, but also relationships related to disease, drinking, smoking, and gambling. Then, when you end a bad relationship, you can find a good relationship. If a happy couple visits the shrine, they will not break up. So, please enjoy paying homage at the shrine with ease.
2. Marine safety
Oomono-nushinokami is the deity who from ancient times leads us to virtue and safety. Especially, Kotohiragu in Sanuki is a famous shrine housing the guardian god for sailors. Yasui Shrine is the only Konpira-san in Kyoto city and is popular among people who like fishing and marine sports.
3. Road safety
This is a similar benefit provided by the power of Oomono-nushinokami. A festival for road safety is held on March 10th every year.
1. Enkiri, enmusubi-ishi
The height of this stone is 1.5 meters, and the width is 3 meters. This big stone has the power of God. Many paper strips called katashiro, or talisman, are stuck on the stone with various wishes. For example, “I want to marry with Taro!” and “Please end the bad relationship between my husband and his lover!” Any wish is okay. These written wishes completely cover the stone.
How to pray
① You write your wish on the katashiro.
② You crawl from front to back through the secret passage you can find under the stone.
③ You stick the katashiro on the stone and pray.
＊Crawling from front to back represents cutting off a bad relationship. And crawling from back to front represents making a good match.
Ancient Japanese believed that God descended to earth riding a horse. That’s the reason why we use horses when we pray and do rituals. Ema are votive pictures of horses, and many ema are preserved and displayed in Konpira-emakan. It was the first ema gallery in Japan and was opened in 1976. It is a good chance to see an art peculiar to Japan, because ema are said to be a cultural asset forgotten in these days.
●Information about Konpira-emakan
・opening hours: 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
・admission (including admission to the Room of Glass Art):
adults 500 yen
high school and younger 400 yen
small children free
・closed Monday, the day after a national holiday, during obon festival, at the end of the year
・It takes about 30 minutes to tour the museum.
3. Room of Glass Art
Here you will find glass art from the 19th century, for example, Art Nouveau and pate de verre. One of the most popular pieces is “God in the Sea,” which was made by Dale Chihuly, who is a modern American glass artist. The creation was made to be exhibited here. You may be surprised when you see the work because of its mysterious beauty and power.
●Information about the Room of Glass Art
・It takes about 10 minutes to tour the room.
*Other information is the same as the information given above for Konpira-emakan.
Address: 70, Shimo Benten-cho, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto
Access: a one-minute walk from the city bus stop “Higashiyama-Yasui”