40 Amazing Facts About Meiji Shrine

Facts About Meiji Shrine: Meiji Jingu is a shrine located in Shibuya Ward, Tokyo. The old shrine is a large shrine, a shrine shrine. Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken are the deities of worship. Most of the precincts were landscaped by the labor service of the National Seinendan, and the trees of the current deep forest were planted with donations from all over the country.

In addition, the Kaguraden, which prays for evil and Shichigosan, centering on the main shrine, the Meiji Jingu Museum, which "displays things related to the ritual deity that remembers the court culture of the Meiji era," and the "healthy Japanese spirit through the great will of the deity."

There are the Budojo Seiseikan and the Meiji Jingu International Shinto Culture Research Institute, which disseminates Shinto culture internationally. Tourists from home and abroad gather every year in the New Year, and the number of worshipers in the first visit is the highest in the year.

40 Amazing Facts About Meiji Shrine

40+ Intresting Facts About Meiji Shrine

  • Until 1946, the Meiji Shrine was in the highest rank of government supported shrines.
  • Work began on the shrine in 1915. It was formally dedicated in 1920; and it was completed in 1921.
  • The designer behind the popular iris gardens is the emperor Meiji himself. What a creative eye, isn’t it?
  • The grounds of the shrine were finished by 1926. Trees in the park were donated by people from all parts of Japan.
  • Meiji Jingu is one of the youngest shrines in Japan. While all the other shrines are almost over a thousand years old, Meiji Shrine is yet to turn 100 in the year 2020.
  • The shrine was done in a total Japanese traditional style with Japanese cypress and copper as the base elements. This traditional Japanese style is called nagare zukuri style in Japanese.
  • The original building was destroyed during the Tokyo air raids of World War II. The present iteration of the shrine was funded through a public fund raising effort and completed in October 1958.
  • In 1920, Meiji Jingu welcomed 500,000 people when it opened. Every year, 10 million people visit Meiji Jingu, the first 3 million in the first three days of the year coming to make wishes for the new year.
  • As you reach the shrine, it is necessary that you bow down twice and clap with your hands twice too before you make any wishes. Following this, it is necessary to bow down again as you leave the shrine building.
  • As for the future, the shrine will commemorate its 100th anniversary in 2020. Doesn’t it seem like a good year? Well, Tokyo will also host the Olympics at the same time. Double good news for the people and tourists of Tokyo.

Suprising Facts About Meiji Shrine

  • The street that leads up to the Shrine is called Omotesando. It is said that it has a greater resemblance to Champs-Élysées in Paris or 5th Avenue in New York. The world “Omotesando” actually means, ‘the gateway to the pathway of the shrine.’
  • Not only adults, but children are also celebrated here. Shichi go san no hi or “seven five three day” is held on November 15 and celebrates the children of age three, five and seven wearing traditional kimonos to be commemorated at the shrine.
  • The forest that encompass the shrine has almost 100,000 trees that adds to the tranquillity of the location. The forest comprises of trees of various species. Interestingly, all these trees were donated by people or organizations from every corner of Japan.
  • After the emperor's death in 1912, the Japanese Diet passed a resolution to commemorate his role in the Meiji Restoration. An iris garden in an area of Tokyo where Emperor Meiji and Empress Shōken had been known to visit was chosen as the building's location.
  • Several festivals are held at the shrine per year. Some festivals are held annually. The exhibitions range from ice carving, shodoten (calligraphy winners's works), bonsai, Suiseki Masterpieces, Memory Dolls, Chrysanthemums, Dahlia and exhibitions at the Treasure Museum Annex.
  • The shrine was officially designated as among one of the Kanpei-taisha, which implies that it was amongst the higher ranks of shrines that were back up by the efforts of the government and the people. It got such recognition because of its status as an Imperial shrine. This went as far as the year 1946.
  • Guests and travelers are often encouraged to participate in plenty of Shinto activities, including to deliver a contribution in the central hall space and writing wishes and desires on an ema (special wooden plate), which is then left behind at the memorial. Talismans and amulets are also accessible for buying.

Unbelievable Facts About Meiji Shrine

  • Not Quite Nature’s Handiwork: In 1916, work was begun for a shrine dedicated to Emperor Meiji after his death. Over 100,000 trees from all over Japan were transplanted in a desolate part of Tokyo called Yoyogi. In other words, the woods inside Meiji Jingu – a symbol of Japan’s love for nature – is completely man made.
  • You can write your name and your wish for the future and for your loved ones on a copper plate that will be left behind to adorn the rooftop of the shrine. One added benefit of this will be that the JPY3,000 you paid for the copper plate will be donated towards the renovation of the shrine and how else can you find a better way to contribute?
  • So what is the Meiji shrine getting for its birthday? Well, for time being, it is under renovation which includes re-plating the copper rooftop of the halls of the shrine. 2020 will have a grand celebration for its 100th birthday. What a maximum number of people will retain are light green rooves, the output of copper oxidating over the years.
  • It is one of the most common practices to pay respect during the entrance to the shrine because of its highly reputable nature of being a sacred place. Paying regards actually has a full-blown procedure on how to pay respect properly when one is in the shrine. It is compulsory to bow down once you enter the torii gate and to bow again while leaving it.
  • Because of its immense popularity and it attracting thousands of tourists each year, many foreign officials have been attracted to visit the Meiji Jingu Shrine in the past years. These officials include German Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle, the United States Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, and The President of the United States, George W. Bush.
  • Meiji Shrine is located in a forest that covers an area of 70 hectares (170 acres). This area is covered by an evergreen forest that consists of 120,000 trees of 365 different species, which were donated by people from all parts of Japan when the shrine was established. The forest is visited by many as a recreation and relaxation area in the center of Tokyo.
  • The Shrine we see today is not the original one, and in fact, has been iterated. This is sadly due to the destruction caused at the original shrine building during the Tokyo air raids in world war two. However, the people remained resilient and the construction was soon done and dusted in October 1958. The local public made a joint effort to raise funds for this.
  • During when the modernization was on the verge of happening, it was Emperor Meiji who was crowned to rule Japan. He was considered the first emperor of the Country. It was during this period that the restoration program of the Meiji shrine was at its peak while the feudal era also had just ended. It was the time of development, of westernization and modernization.

Historical Facts About Meiji Shrine

  • There are many attractions that you can have a look at while in the shrine. It consists of the Meiji Memorial Picture Gallery which is actually a building inspired by the European style and which contains about 40 paintings illustrating the life of Emperor Meiji. Another building is that of Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium, a work of modern architecture which is inspired by the contour of a samurai helmet.
  • The adults are celebrated here! Saijin no hi, or the Adult’s day is held at Meiji Jingu shrine on the second Monday in January every year. This day is reserved for the people who have just crossed their 20s and who wear expansive traditional dresses and pay a visit to the shrine. The pathway leading to the shrine is decorated with ice sculptures and there is a traditional performance of momoteshiki archery.
  • This fact will showcase the strong bond amongst the people of Japan. The restoration was considered as a national project. Therefore, several institutions in Japan initiated their individual respective donations and grants to assist in the completion of the construction. The associations included groups like youth group and civic associations that provided aid in terms of both labor work and collecting funds.
  • The northern part of the shrine consists of the Meiji Jingu Treasure House. The house was constructed after a year of the opening of the shrine itself. It is a house to the personal belongings of Emperor Meiji and Empress Shoken. In fact, it houses the carriage which was used to carry both the emperor and empress for their ride to the iris garden and to the official declaration of Meiji’s constitution in 1889.
  • In the late 19th century and early 20th century, Emperor Meiji opened up Japan to the West with treaties, Western clothes, and wine. In fact, when his doctor informed the Emperor that he had diabetes and should diminish his sake intake, the good doctor recommended red wine in its place. Once the wineries of Burgundy in France heard about that, they sent bottles of their best red wine to Emperor Meiji every December.
  • While entering the Temizuya, one ought to wash the left hand and then the right hand. Following this, pour some water into the left hand. Next, wash the mouth accompanied by the rinsing of the left hand again. Finally, clean the dipper itself by allowing the leftover water to flow down the handle. It is vital to regard that the dipper must straight away be in connection with the mouth and that money should not be tossed into the water.
  • Western clothes, treaties and wine were something that Emperor Meiji introduced to the people of Japan in the dead of the 19th century and the wake of the 20th century. Additionally, the Emperor suffered from diabetes and was recommended by the doctor to limit his sake intake and instead switch to red wine. As soon as it became a piece of news, the wineries of Burgandy in France immediately sent bottles of their most pleasant wines to the Emperor.
  • It is interesting how on the sheltered and tranquil earthy track into the groves on the route to the shrine halls, you can observe vessels of sake on your right and kegs of wine on your left. Sake is composed of rice, a staple of Japan, and is known to be given by the sun kami, Amaterasu at the inception of what is now the present time. Rice and rice wine are two fundamental libations to “kami”. The casks of wine symbolize the modernization and westernization that Emperor Meiji succored to guide in Japan.
  • Like every other culturally significant thing, there is a rich history behind the Tokyo shrine too. The Meiji Shrine is also known as Meiji Jingu and was gifted to Emperor Meiji and his consort Empress Shoken. The Japanese Diet transferred the judgment to memorialize the part of the sovereign in the Meiji Restoration. The decision to build the shrine in an iris garden in Tokyo was taken when the Emperor passed out. The iris garden was selected because it was here where both the emperor and empress were known to take a stroll quite often.
  • Taking for it to be such a famed shrine, it i sbound to host many kinds of festivals and celebrations throughout the year. The celebrations being with the New Year’s day with Nikku sai, where millions of people flock the shrine to wish for a good fortune. The celebrations continue throughout the year up until the end of the year when the Joya sai falls (December 31). Throughout the year there is a lot of commotion. One internationally recognized festival is the Spring Grand Festival that happens in late April and the beginning of May. The shrine hosts unimaginable performances done by various experts in the field of dance and music. Besides the festivities, you can often spot the traditional Shinto wedding happening in the Meiji Jingu shrine. In summation, there is always something happening 365 days of the year so stay active!
  • The often overlooked part of the Shrine is its elaborated Inner Garden which is located at the southern part of the shrine. Not many people consider it to be, but it is quite an important part of the shrine. These iris gardens are one of the reasons why the Meiji shrine was actually built here. These gardens were often visited by the Emperor and Empress. The garden consists of an attractive maze of picturesque forest walks and traditional iris gardens. It also encompasses a classical Japanese tea stall. The garden requires an entrance fee but it is not that expensive. The garden consists of a power spot too where the people come to restore their energy by purging out the negatives and taking in the positives. The spot is called Kiyomasa’s Well, which is named after the person who dug it almost 400 years ago. The person was a military officer.

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