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Title: Medieval Kagura of Calendric deities




A variety of “foreign” deities like Gozu Tennō (Tengeishō), Hachiōji, Konjin, Bankoō, Daishōgun and Dokōjin, appear in “kagura” that spread throughout the Japanese archipelago during the late Medieval period. The majority of them are closely linked to the Hoki Naiden and the Hokishō.

Among them, the most famous deity is Daidokōjin, seen in the story of Gojin Gorō Ōji.In the Hoki Naiden from the 17th year of Keichō, the story of Daidokōjin is published as a variant of that of Kōtei Kōryūō, fifth prince of Bankoō. It is certain that the ritual text “Daidokōjin saimon”, chanted in kagura of different areas, is closely linked to the Hoki Naiden and its annotation Hokishō. What is important is that Daikōjin has a history as a “calendric deity”.

The characteristics of a “calendric deity” are all shared throughout all the deities linked with the Hoki Naiden. However, it is worth focusing on how these deities, portrayed in the Hoki Naiden, an annoted almanac, and the Hokishō, its annotation, have transformed in the “saimon” chanted in various kagura throughout the land. This paper will explore, among other things, the “Dokō Saimon” handed down in Yamagata village of Aki country, which bears the “auspicious date of the 14th year and 8th month of Tenbun (1545), the “Sutra of Daidokōjin” (Jōō 4, 1655) from Okumikawa and the “Daidokūjin Honchi” (Taiyu Handa Bunji). This research will shed a light on the formation of Medieval Japan’s deities as completely distinct from deities formerly seen in Shinbutsu Shūgō and Medieval Shinto, and it will reveal how they were created through the medium of “kagura”.

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