A deeply spiritual place of inner beauty and refined elegance with four guardian gods
Hokkaido-jingu Shrine, located in Sapporo, Hokkaido, is considered one of the best places to view cherry blossoms in northern japan. But this shrine is not just known for its natural beauty; it is also a deeply spiritual place with a rich history and a strong connection to the local community.
The shrine is the resting place of four deities: Okunitama, Onamuchi, Sukunahikona, and Emperor Meiji. These guardian gods are believed to protect the land and its people, and their presence adds to the aura of tranquility and reverence that surrounds the shrine.
One of the most popular activities at Hokkaido-jingu is writing wishes on wooden plaques called ema. Visitors can purchase ema at the shrine and then write their wishes or prayers on them. The ema are then hung up at the shrine, where it is believed that the gods will hear and answer the wishes. This tradition has been practiced for centuries and continues to be a meaningful and deeply personal experience for many visitors.
In addition to writing wishes, visitors can also purchase lucky charms at the shrine. These charms, known as omamori, are believed to bring good luck and protection to the owner. There are different types of omamori available at Hokkaido-jingu, each with its own specific purpose or blessing. Whether it’s for success in school or work, good health, or safe travels, there is an omamori for every need.
Getting to Hokkaido-jingu Shrine is relatively easy. Visitors can take a two-minute subway train from Sapporo Station to Odori, and then transfer to a seven-minute Tozai subway train to Maruyama-koen Station. From there, it is just a short 15-minute walk to the shrine. The journey to the shrine is part of the experience, as visitors can enjoy the beauty of Sapporo and its surroundings along the way.
Hokkaido-jingu Shrine has a long and fascinating history. In 1871, the Japanese government abolished the feudal system and took control of the land. In order to oversee the reclamation of Hokkaido, three gods were selected and enshrined at a place called Sapporo-jinja. This shrine later became known as Hokkaido-jingu Shrine. The three gods, Okunitama, Onamuchi, and Sukunahikona, were chosen for their divine qualities and their ability to protect the land and its people.
The fourth deity enshrined at Hokkaido-jingu is Emperor Meiji himself. Emperor Meiji was a beloved and revered figure in Japanese history, and his presence at the shrine adds to its significance and spiritual power. The shrine also serves as a place of remembrance and gratitude for the contributions of Emperor Meiji to the modernization and development of Japan.
Unfortunately, the original shrine building was destroyed by a fire in 1974. However, it was quickly rebuilt and restored to its former glory in 1978. The restoration was a testament to the deep connection between the shrine and the local community, as people came together to support and rebuild this important cultural and spiritual landmark.
When visiting Hokkaido-jingu Shrine, it is important to observe proper etiquette and manners. As you approach the shrine, you will pass through a torii gate, which marks the entrance to the sacred grounds. It is considered disrespectful to walk through the center of the gate, as that path is believed to be reserved for the gods. Instead, visitors should walk to the side of the gate when entering or exiting the shrine.
The same respect should be observed when taking photographs of the torii gate. It is best to avoid shooting from the central path and instead find a vantage point from the side. This shows reverence for the sacredness of the gate and the spiritual significance it holds.
Hokkaido-jingu Shrine is not just a place of worship and spiritual reflection; it is also a place of natural beauty and serenity. The shrine is surrounded by lush greenery and towering trees, creating a peaceful and idyllic atmosphere. The cherry blossoms, in particular, are a sight to behold during the spring season, filling the shrine grounds with delicate pink petals and a sense of renewal and hope.
Visiting Hokkaido-jingu Shrine is not only a chance to connect with the divine and seek blessings; it is also an opportunity to immerse oneself in the rich culture and history of Hokkaido. The shrine is a symbol of the region’s resilience and spirit, as well as a reminder of the deep reverence and respect that the Japanese people have for their traditions and heritage.
In conclusion, Hokkaido-jingu Shrine is a deeply spiritual place of inner beauty and refined elegance. With its four guardian gods and rich history, the shrine holds a special place in the hearts of the local community and visitors alike. Whether it’s writing wishes on wooden plaques, purchasing lucky charms, or simply enjoying the tranquility of the shrine grounds, a visit to Hokkaido-jingu is a truly enriching and meaningful experience.
Address And Maps Location:
474 Miyagaoka, Chuo-ku, Sapporo-shi, Hokkaido