Encyclopedia of Shinto

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カテゴリー1: 9. Texts and Sources
カテゴリー2: Other Basic Texts
Shirushi no sugi
Text (Ban Nobutomo)
This is the work of Ban Nobutomo, consists of one volume, and was finished in 1835. It contains research into the Inari Shrine of Yamashiro Province (Fushimi Inari). One section was published in 1842 in Ōōhitsugo, second volume. The background for the writing of this work has to do with the spread of the belief in Inari at the time. In spite of Inari Shrine being an ancient shrine, the origins of the shrine had become confused as folk traditions spread. Because of this Nobutomo searched the ancient annals, records, and setsuwa collections to find mention of Inari Shrine, which he annotated and then organized. He organized these quotations as creation deities, enshrined deities (saijin), divine rank (shinkai), festival ceremonies, and beliefs, and added annotation. A special problem was the relation of Inari Shrine and Kūkai, due to honji suijaku thought (the theory that kami were actually manifestations of Buddhist deities), which held the true form of the deity to be a fox. Inari was under the protection of Higashidera, but Nobutomo avoided the common theory of its connection with the female deity Dakini, saying it was a fallacious belief that had originated with Kūkai. Regarding the belief in the myth about the fox, however, Nobutomo supported the perspective on the kami put forth by Motoori Norinaga, and said that even if the true form was a fox, one should not indiscriminately despise it, or view it as a groundless story. He denied the relation with Dakini, but granted that the deity could appear as a fox or be conceived as one. This work is contained in Ban Nobutomo zenshū, volume two (Kokusho Hankōkai, 1907), and the Shintō Taikei.
— Mori Mizue

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