Hachiman

Hachiman

ALSO KNOWN AS:

Yawata

CLASSIFICATION:

Kami, Bosatsu

Hachiman the Divine Warrior is the patron, guardian, and defender of Japan. In his past life, he was Emperor Ojin, son of Empress Jingu. Mother, son, and Ojin’s wife, Himegami, are venerated together as a triad at Hachimangu shrines. Hachiman may or may not also be Bishamon in disguise. Hachiman transcends boundaries: he is venerated at Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples. Originally a shamanic spirit, he became patron of the Minamoto Clan and was revered by samurai and peasants alike.

FAVOURED PEOPLE:

Soldiers, warriors, archers, the Japanese

ICONOGRAPHY:

Hachiman is usually depicted in the guise of a Buddhist monk.

Bird:

Dove

Number: 8

SACRED SITES:

There are thousands of Hachiman shrines (Hachimangu) including:

• Usa Shrine in Usa

• Todaisi Temple in Nara

• Tsurugaoka Hachiman Shrine in Kamakura

• Iwashimizu Hachiman Shrine in Yawata

• Tomioko Hachiman Shrine in Tokyo

SEE ALSO:

Bishamon; Bosatsu; Jingu, Empress; Kami

SOURCE:

Encyclopedia of Spirits: The Ultimate Guide to the Magic of Fairies, Genies, Demons, Ghosts, Gods & Goddesses – Written by : Judika Illes Copyright © 2009 by Judika Illes.

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