Kurama’s Fire Festival
What is Kurama’s Fire Festival
An annual festival of Yukijinja shrine holds at 22nd of October. In 1987 it registered by government as intangible folk-culture property.
And it is known as one of the three interesting characteristic festivals.
During the middle of Heian period (794-1185), continuous extraordinary natural phenomenons were occurred. In 940 A.D. by the Imperial order Yukijinja moved to int the land of Kuramadera temple owns to be a pivot of the north spiritual protection of the capital. It says the procession of removal shrine became more than one kilometer. The people who lived around the new location of the shrine watched this procession, started to transmit the Yukijinja’s imposing to posterity.
Schedule of the Festival
18 o’clock, with the announcement of “come to the Shinto ritual”, people light on to each property’s fire. And an infant carries a small fire and other older follow the infant.
They walk along the street hitting drums with oral accompaniment.
Around 20 o’clock, the entrance of Kuramadera temple, more than five hundred people gather with fire. The heat can feel along the street. In good time, people collect all fires after the cut of sacred straw rope to burn everything.
After that, young people run up the stairs of Kuramadera temple. And they carry out the portable shrine and start to come down the stairs. To avoid falling down women pull the rope this is tied to the portable shrine from the top of the stairs. On the other hand two young men hang down to the front poles of the portable shrine. This action was a coming-of-age ceremony of young Kuramaji temple area. The festival finishes past 0 o’clock.
During the beginning people carry fire (procession of fire). And its weight is sometimes more than a hundred kilograms. The view of the procession in that night is so beautiful and powerful.
- Nijo Castle
- Maiko (Geisha)
Historical, custom basis, georaphical, cultural stuff of the Kyoto :)