Time seemed to have come to a standstill the morning we visited Oharano jinja, a Shinto shrine located in the Nishikyo area of Kyoto. Nary a single soul lest ourselves were in the premises and the tranquility of the place was unbelievable.
(above) An Omikuji (fortune strip) stand fashioned out of bamboo, resembling a giant egg beater – I’ve never seen one shaped like this before (not in Tokyo, at least). The Japanese’s skill and resourcefulness in utilizing bamboo/wood never cease to amaze me. (below) Used stands tied full of Omikuji.
(above) The roof of the main hall was still covered with snow from yesterday’s fall, reflecting the vibrant blue of the clear sky.
(above) A stone deer sculpture with a rolled up scroll in its mouth – deers are messengers of the gods in Shintoism, akin to the Kitsune ( fox spirits ), which I saw in abundance at the incredibly beautiful Fushimi-Inari Shrine.
(below) An age old fir tree decorated with a necklace full of beautiful illustrated Ema boards.
(above) Shinroku Mikuji, the Shrine’s unique Omikuji that is delivered with an exquisitely crafted wooden deer . (Photograph by Takeshi). (below) A verdant bamboo forest surrounds the back of the shrine; it’s not as expansive as the one in Arashiyama, but beautiful nonetheless.