Ninomiya Shrine in Hirakata, Where Wishes Come True
Ninomiya Shrine in Hirakata is known as a place where wishes come true through “Okagesama mairi,” or the grace of the gods. Some of you may be doubftful, so why don’t you visit Ninomiya Shrine and try it out for yourself?
1. What is so special about Ninomiya Shrine?
Oda Nobunaga, known as the first “Great Unifier” of Japan, repaired the shrine buildings, and Toyotomi Hideyori, a child of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, a Japanese samurai and the second “Great Unifier” of Japan, revered the shrine as a place to protect the Otemon Gate of Osaka Castle, and restored the main shrine and other buildings.
2. What is “okagesama mairi?”
At one point, “Okagesama mairi” at Ninomiya Shrine was very popular and many people came from far away to visit the shrine. Although things seem to have calmed down a bit now, many wish-fulfilling “omamori”, charms or amulets, are still purchased regularly.These are amulets that were returned after wishes were granted.
How to perform “okagesama mairi”
First, apply at the shrine office.Upon entering the shrine grounds, you’ll see the shrine in front of you and the office is to your right.Tell the priest at the office that you would like to try “okagesama mairi” and you will be given a piece of paper. Write your name and wish on the right-hand side. Then fold the paper in half to hide your wish within. Fold it twice more in the same direction.
The paper is folded like this so it is the same size as the Shinji, the sacred seal inside the amulet. Then hand over the paper to the priest and he will place it inside the amulet.This is a good luck charm for “Okagesama-sansan”, or visits to the shrine. There are separate good luck charms for men and women. This one for men is called “Otoko-mamori” (“otoko” means man and “mamori” means charm).
Make a wish to the god at the shrine while holding the amulet in your hand. When making a wish, men hold it in their right hand and women hold it in their left hand.
This amulet should be kept in a bag or purse, and should be kept as close to you as possible at all times. The priest taught us the following three things to make it easier for our wishes to come true:
Think positively about everything.
If you stay mindful of these three points, your wishes are more likely to come true. The fee for “Okagesama” is 700 yen.
3. Ninomiya Shrine’s Amulets and Stamps
The shrine offers many other kinds of good luck charms.Left: This is a charm for pets.
Upper right: The red and green charms make three or six blessings come true. The pink and blue charms make dreams come true.
Lower right: There are also charms called “Katsumori” with a samurai helmet design.The shrine’s red seals are available at the shrine office for 300 yen.
4. The Story of the Red Maple
The maple tree next to the shrine office is gouged out near the roots. When we asked how the tree came to look like this, we were told that 36 years ago concrete was poured right up to the tree trunk.
The tree began to weaken, and so the priest removed the concrete from around the tree. It did not fully heal, but the priest said that it still sprouts new leaves every year. The red paint on the tree is a medicine applied by a gardener.
5. Ninomiya Shrine Access
Ninomiya Shrine is a 10-minute walk from Keihan Kuzuha Station.After exiting the ticket gate at Kuzuha Station, go straight. Turn right when you see the yellow taxi stand sign.Once outside, you will see a drugstore ahead. Turn left in front of the drugstore.After passing the drugstore, go straight at this intersection.Turn right at the second intersection.Go straight and you will see Kansai Medical University Kuzuha Hospital. Continue going straight.Turn left and cross the street at the second traffic light.Continue along the sidewalk.Turn left at the end of the street. It is a bit confusing, so please check the enlarged image.Further along you will see a forest, which is the entrance to Ninomiya Shrine.There is a torii gate on the left.You can see the shrine grounds from the torii gate.
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