|Sacred Sake Offering|
The popular Meiji Jingu Shrine was built and dedicated to the Meiji Emperor and his wife. A route (15 mins walk) leads from the Harajuku Station through a tranquil forest to the Main Shrine. We were greeted by a huge wooden Torii gate at the main entrance. The toriis are commonly found at Shinto shrines and temples and represent a unique icon of Japan. No visit to Japan would be completed without a photo with a Torii.
|Family Photo at the Main Shrine's Torii|
We soon reached the main shrine. Before entering the shrine to offer your prayers, visitors are expected to cleanse themselves at the Purification Fountain. Do not be worried. There are clear procedures in English at site. You can refer to this site if you are interested in the purification ritual (Shubatsu).
The main building inside the shrine is the Offering Hall. We needed to walk through a large square to offer our prayer. At the right side of the hall, there is a fence around a tree which many "Ema" are hung. An Ema is a wooden plate which you use to write your wishes.
|Main Gates into the Square|
|Main and Offering Hall|
|Thru the Doorway|
|Traditional Japan Shinto Wedding Procession|
|Japanese Family Photo Shoot|
|The Groom and Bride|
The experience at the Meiji Jingu Shrine is an enjoyable one. Compare with other temples and shrines I have visited, the setup of the shrine may not be very impressive but the atmosphere and culture that bind to the holy ground are invaluable. Seeing many Japanese (young and old) offering their sincere prayers at the shrine, I could see the highly-esteemed place Meiji held inside their hearts. I could finally understand the reason why Japanese couples like to celebrate the wedding at the Meiji Jingu Shrine. Do not miss this place when you have the chance to visit Tokyo.
|Family Photo at the Sake Offering Hall|
|For Your Pinning|