The Sacred Pillar Festival

The four major shrines around Lake Suwa, 200km northwest of Tokyo is called Suwa Grand Shrine 諏訪大社.

 

1. Upper shrine, Front branch  上社前宮

上・前

 

2. Upper shrine, Main branch 上社本宮

DSC04724

 

3. Lower shrine, Spring branch 下社春宮

下・春

 

4. Lower shrine, Autumn branch 下社秋宮

下・秋

 

It is four shrines, but one.

Name of the branch office is not four seasons, nor four directions.

Upper shrine is located far south of Lake Suwa, and Lower shrine is north and by the lake.

 

Why Japanese people!!?!

 

Once every seven years, there is an unique festival to replace the four sacred pillars placed around each branch offices. The festival started over 1,200 years ago.

上・本1

 

Each pillar is massive.

Height: 17m

Diameter: 1m

Weight: 10t

Tree: Fir, same as Christmas tree

Age: over 150

 

Each pillars are hand carried by hundreds of disciples with a song.

DSC04756

 

 

Cross the river,

kawawatari

 

Diving off the cliff,

DSC04763

(View from the top)

 

yamaotoshi

(bottom)

 

Then rest for one month,

resting

 

and finally replace the old pillar.

 

It is believed that the pillars become God in the process of this festival.

Old pillar will be securitized and sold to disciples.

 

Disciples sometimes die especially when diving off the cliff and setting up the pillar.

Very serious festival.

DSC04745

 

Why Japanese people!!?!

 

 

Takeshi YASUDA

Takeshi YASUDATakeshi YASUDA

Spokesperson, HEISEI Corporation

With 10 years of devoted service as secretary to the founder, I have experienced a regional construction company grow double in revenue and in the number of employees. My previous experience at Japanese investment bank convinces me that our business model will grow further and change the landscape of the industry. Hobby: Wine, Sailing, Tea, Bonsai, History, and Architecture.