十月〈神無月〉 October/ Kannnazuki

八百万の神々が出雲に集まる為、神無月。逆に出雲では神有月というそう。島根県、稲佐の浜で神迎えが行われます。しかし、京都ではその謂れを欺き、街中の神社で収穫の喜びを神に感謝し、花祭りや酒祭り、茶祭り、瑞饋祭り等、様々な秋祭りが行われます。

The month’s traditional name, Kannazuki, has the ominous meaning “godless month”, or “month of the gods’ absence”. It’s because during this time the eight million(!) gods in the Shinto pantheon are said to convene elsewhere, in Izumo, Tottori Prefecture. Thus, in Izumo the month is conversely referred to as Kamiarizuki, “the month of the gods’ presence”, and includes ceremonies to welcome the gods on the beach known as Inasa no Hama. Residents of Tottori have their own complex take on tradition, holding a diverse variety of autumn rites and festivals that celebrate the bounteous harvests. The multifarious events spotlight much of what Japanese people have come to hold dear as the fruits of nature: flowers, sake, tea, rice and more.

二十二日

22nd

平安京遷都1100年を祝う記念行事として平安神宮が創建されたのを機に始まった行事として時代祭りがあります。120年程の比較的歴史が浅い祭りですが、京都の三大祭りのひとつとして親しまれ、京都の秋を彩る大変華やかな行事です。

当日朝、神幸祭を平安神宮で行った後、鳳輦が京都御所に入り、正午から建礼門前より、平安時代延暦期から明治維新までの時代を歴史人物に扮した総勢二千数百人に及ぶ参列者の巡行が始まり、京都の街を抜けて平安神宮まで巡行します。

The Jidai Matsuri, or “Festival of the Ages” has a notably short history of just 120 or so years. Nevertheless, it’s possibly the most popular of the “big three” festivals. It was established as a commemoration of Kyoto’s status as the nation’s capital over the roughly 1100 year stretch from 794 CE through the end of the 19th century, with only a brief interruption. The festival truly sets the autumn scene in Kyoto most comprehensively, with its color, events and overall character.

This period marks the culmination of the Gion Matsuri in the form of the Shinko-sai, a ceremony played out at Kyoto’s Heian Jingu shrine, among Japan’s holiest, with strong ties to the imperial household. At noon between two and three thousand celebrants dressed in authentic costumes representing the period from the Heian/Enryaku eras (around the 8th century CE) to the beginning of the Meiji era (1863 to 1912) gather at the site of the Kyoto Imperial Palace, whereupon the sanctified, phoenix-topped mikoshi are carried in processions from the Kenrei Mon gate through town to the Heian Jingu shrine.


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