Approaching the main hall from the stairs one can see this small shrine to the left. Behind it is the massive main hall.
This angle shows the stone basin where the worshippers cleanse themselves, as well as the small administrative structure adjacent to the main hall.
This ema reads, in the center, "May I find someone I really like and keep a good relationship for a long time." To the right is also written," May I find a man."
This ema reads, "May my family be happy and live joyously and brightly. May we all be happy."
This sign instructs those (probably of younger generations) who need a reminder how to worship (from right to left): "First you bow twice with back bent to ninety degrees and head lowered. Then you clap your hands twice at chest level. Then bow one last time."
This ema reads, "May Bun-chan's leg [or foot] heal quickly and may he graduate without any difficulty." Imprinted on the ema to the left is a place for the name and address of the petitioner, which is given in full. The petitioner's name is female; presumably this is a mother praying for her son.
This is the same structure as in cocrejpn0163.
After clapping her hands, ringing the bell and bowing up closer to the hall, in the traditional manner, this young woman backed up several steps and stood with her head bowed for many minutes while facing the shrine.
This plaque in front of the tree with the himorogi says that the tree was over 500 years old when it was severely injured by burns received in the bombing of Kobe during WWII. However, even though shattered, it managed to stay alive, and so became revered as a symbol of rebirth and resuscitation. The plaque refers to it as a "divine (kami) tree."
The space beside the pathway is often filled with a vast collection of devotional pieces likely placed by different people centuries apart. The scenery weaves a tale of religious sentiment right into the very fabric of the forest.
Between the Tamagawa and the mausoleum (on the left when facing the mausoleum) is this gated burial space reserved for members of Japan's Imperial family.
The torii gate on the left in this image marks the presence of a shrine and its kami. Such shrines by the side of a street or a road (or in the middle of a field, or elsewhere) are common in Japan. This particular one is on a quiet back street in the Yamagishi neighborhood of Morioka. Throughout the day, passing residents stop at the shrine, bowing twice and clapping their hands twice, to summon the attention of the kami, then standing quietly with clasped hands and head bowed in prayer or in thanksgiving. -- The stone torii on the right marks the path that leads up the stone stairs to a shrine at the top of the hill, overlooking the Yamagishi district.
A building at Eikan-Do shrine in Kyoto.
The Japanese flag waves proudly from the roof of a shrine in Nagasaki.
Detail of the tiled roofline at the Meiji Shrine.
A tree blossoms in Engakuji, Kamakura.
Priests ring an enormous bronze bell during a celebration at Yasaka Shrine.
A building at Eikan-do shrine complex.
On a man-made island in the middle of a small river sits several statues and pillars in honor of the river god.
Upon almost reaching the end of the covered stairways, there is a small landing where one is greeted by a small red Shinto shrine dedicated to a local deity.
At this stone basin worshippers will rinse both hand and mouth as a symbolic act of purification before proceeding into the shrine center.
The main shrine at Hasedera is comprised of two buildings. To the left is a larger structure (cocrejpn0061) adjacent to which on the right is this smaller one.