2016/09/08

Zenkibo Tengu

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Zenkiboo Zenkibō 前鬼坊 Zenkibo, Zenki-Bo
那智滝本前鬼坊 Nachi no Takimoto Zenkibo
大峰山前鬼坊 Ominesan Zenki-Bo



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役行者 En no Gyoja is usually flanked by a couple of two demons,
the husband Zenki 前鬼 and his wife Goki 後鬼


These demons promised En no Gyoja, a Shugendo priest at Mount Ominesan in Nara, to protect the pilgrims of the area. They had five children, whose families in the x-th generation up to this day have five mountain huts where the pilgrims can rest during their walk from Oomine to Kumano.
The family business is going on for more than 1300 years now. Gokijo 後鬼助 san, in the 61 generation, lives in Osaka now and comes back every weekend and holidays to take care of the pilgrims.

I have written more about En no Gyoja and Yoshino here:
. Yoshinoyama - 吉野山 Yoshino Mountains - .

Zenki 前鬼 and Goki 後鬼
The following names were given to them by En no Gyoja after he had saved them from their demon ways
and turned them into good souls are:

Zendooki 善童鬼(ぜんどうき) Zendoki / 義覚/ 義学 Gikaku - Gigaku
Myoodooki 妙童鬼(みょうどうき)Myodoki / 義玄 Gigen


Zenki was born in 奈良県吉野郡下北山村 Shimokitayama village in Yoshino. - - 前鬼の里 Zenki no Sato.
Zenki represents the positive 陽 YO aspect and is depicted as a red oni 鬼 demon holding an iron ax 鉄斧. He used to walk in front of En no Gyoja and hacked the path free.
He is also depicted with a kind of straw rucksack 笈.

His wife Goki was born in 奈良県吉野郡天川村 Tengawa villge in Yoshino.
represents the negative 陰 IN aspect and is depicted as a blue/green demon.
She holds a flask with ritual water 理水 and carries a rucksack with seeds.

Together they symbolize 陰陽 the Yin and Yang of things, or the A-Un 阿吽, Alpha and Omega, the beginning and end of all things.

Their five children are - - - 真義、義継、義上、義達 and 義元.

. oni no shison 鬼の子孫 / onisuji 鬼筋 - descendants of Oni .
The five Oni children : (五鬼 goki)
五鬼助(ごきじょ)Gokijo, 五鬼継(ごきつぐ)Gokitsugu, 五鬼上(ごきじょう) Gokijo,、五鬼童(ごきどう)Gokido,
五鬼熊(ごきくま)Gokikuma

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奈良・大峰山の鬼たち The Demons from Omine, Nara

- reference source : toki.moo.jp/gaten -

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- quote -
Mount Ōmine - 大峰山 Ōmine-san
a sacred mountain in Nara, Japan, famous for its three tests of courage.
Officially known as Mount Sanjō (山上ヶ岳 Sanjō-ga-take),
it is more popularly known as Mount Ōmine due to its prominence in the Ōmine mountain range. It is located in Yoshino-Kumano National Park in the Kansai region, Honshū, Japan.
The temple Ōminesanji,
located at the top of the mountain, is the headquarters of the Shugendō sect of Japanese Buddhism and the entire mountain is part of a pilgrimage and training ground for the yamabushi.
The monastery at Mount Ōmine
was founded in the 8th century by En no Gyōja, as a home for his new religion of Shugendō. Shugendo literally means "the path of training and testing," and is based on the self-actualization of spiritual power in experiential form through challenging and rigorous ritualistic tests of courage and devotion known as shugyo.
- - - More in the WIKIPEDIA !


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Since 1788, a Sake brewery in Nara produces rice wine in their memory.
- reference source : komesou.com/nihonnsyu/syoujou -

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source : blogs.yahoo.co.jp/teravist

- reference : 前鬼坊 -

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. Legends and Tales from Japan 伝説 - Introduction .

............................................................................... Nara 奈良県

En no Gyoja met a couple of Oni who were eating humans. He asked them not to do that any more but they did not listen to him. He hid in a cave but they wanted to give him human flesh to eat even there.
Now 不動明王 Fudo Myo-O comes along and pressured the couple not to eat humans any more. Now they promised to change their ways.
Zenki went to 洞川 Dorogawa (now a famous hot spring), and Goki went to 十津川 Totsukawa .

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御所市 Gose
Zenki and Goki once lived on 葛城山 Mount Katsuragisan and together with the Deity 一言主神 Hitokotonushi they were strong leaders of the region.
. the Deity Hitokotonushi 一言主 .

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大峯山 Ominesan
In some parts of the Omine region, the forest people are called 笈 oi : 前笈 and 後笈.
oi is a kind of rucksack, made of wood or bamboo in former times.
They villagers are very strong and robust and carry the luggage of visitors. They look almost like Oni and some say they are the descendants of Zenki and Goki.

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鬼取町 Onitori / 生駒郡 Ikoma
At 生駒山 Mount Ikomasan、En no Gyoja had a dream given to him by 孔雀明 Kujaku Myo-O.
He should capture the two Oni from the foot of Ikomasan and turn them into decent beings. He stayed in prayer for 21 days and on the last day, with 不動緊縛の法 a special ritual of Fudo Myo-O he could capture them.
So the Oni cut off their hair and became the pious disciples of En no Gyoja.

The mountain is now called Onitorisan 鬼取山 "Mountain of capturing the Demons",
and the village is still called that way, 鬼取 Onitori.



At the temple 髪切山慈光寺 Kamikiriyama, Jiko-Ji, masks of the Red and Green Oni are kept in honor and rituals are held.
During the annual festival, these two masks are worn by specially elected men and lead a parade through the region.
Kamikiriyama means "the mountain where they cut off their hair".

鬼取山(又は鬼取獄)
- reference source : geocities.jp/iko_kan2/ikoma-oni -


CLICK for more photos !

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信貴山 Shigisan
When En no Gyoja practised austerities at Mount Shigisan in 673, there was a couple of huge demons of more than three meters high with long fangs. But En no Gyoja subdued them and took away their supernatural powers.
They begun to take care of him and help him in his life as Zenki and Goki.

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天川村 Tenkawa
At the home of the 柿阪秀元氏 Kakisaka Hidemoto family, on the eve of the Setsubun ritual in spring, they place ritual water at the entrance and prepare a special seat for the Oni to take a rest.
They do not pierce the head of a sardine (a custom to drive away the Oni), and they call
"Fuku wa Uchi, Oni wa Uchi" May good luck come in, may the Demon come in!
The family is said to have Zenki and Goki as their ancestors.

. setsubun 節分 "the seasonal divide" .
Usually people call:
fuku wa uchi 福は内(ふくはうち)"Good luck, come in!"
oni wa soto 鬼は外(おにはそと)"Demons, get out! "


. Setsubun - 「鬼は内」Oni wa Uchi ! .

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吉野 Yoshino 
En no Gyôja journeyed to the Mino'o Waterfall in Osaka, where he met the Bodhisattva Ryûju. He erected a temple to Ryûju called Mino'o Temple
Then he tried to convince the local Shinto deity, Hitokotonushi, to help him build a 石橋 stone bridge extending from Mt. Katsuragi to Mt. Yoshino.
Hitokotonushi only worked during the night and hid his face during the daytime. Thus En no Gyoja became angry at the slow pace of the god's work, and threw him into a valley. The angry god then petitioned the emperor to send armies after En no Gyôja, to arrest him, claiming that the monk sought to rebel against the throne. Gyôja escaped the armies easily, flying away on his clouds, but, after they captured his mother instead, he was forced to surrender himself.
He was exiled to Izu Ôshima, but escaped his exile, flying to Mt. Fuji. .....
- reference : wiki.samurai-archives.com -


大和葛城山久米の岩橋伝説 - The Legend of the Stone Bridge at Kume, Katsuragisan
- reference source : toki.moo.jp/gaten -


There is also a river called 前鬼川 Zenkigawa and the Fudo Nanae waterfall 不動七重滝.
- reference and photos : riko.naturum.ne.jp -



- quote -
Fudo Nanae Fall
was chosen as one of the 100 most beautiful waterfalls of Japan. Fed by the Zenkigawa River, water cascades down in seven stages, falling 100m from the top to the bottom and providing a majestic natural view.
Early summer and fall are especially good seasons to see the picturesque beauty of the scenery.
- source : pref.nara.jp/nara_e -


............................................................................... Osaka 大阪府
箕面市 Mino

On 摂津の箕面山 mount Minosan in Settsu (Hyogo) there lived a couple of Oni.
The husband had red eyes and the wife a yellow mouth. They had five children. They grabbed human children and ate them. To change their ways, En no Gyoja banned the youngest of their children in a cave. The parents came to En no Gyoja and asked him where their child was. They would never eat human children again if he would let them have the kid back.
Finally he told them were it was and all of them left the region.

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- reference : nichibun yokai database 妖怪データベース -
ゼンキ,ゴキ

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- - - - - H A I K U - - - - -

下草を薙ぎ行く前鬼後鬼の裔
shitakusa o nagi-yuku zenki goki no ei

cutting the thicket
as they go along - descendants
of Zenki and Goki


右城暮石 Ushiro Boseki (1899 - 1995)

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前鬼にも呑せて行や香需散
炭太祇

卓にたつ前鬼が肩に雪霏々たり
横山白虹

夏の霧噴き捲く前鬼後鬼像
猿橋統流子

夢に出し前鬼と後鬼春の山
角川春樹

屠蘇酌めり前鬼後鬼の山長者
青畝

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. 四十八天狗 - 48 famous Tengu of Japan .

. Tengu 天狗と伝説 Tengu legends "Long-nosed Goblin" .

. - yookai, yōkai 妖怪 Yokai monsters - .

. Legends and Tales from Japan 伝説 - Introduction .

. Mingei 民芸 Regional Folk Art from Japan .

- #zenkibo #zenkigoki -
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1 comment:

Gabi Greve said...

Nikko Komine Jinja 古峯ヶ原古峯神社.
Tengu no Yashiro 天狗の社 Shrine of the Tengu

One of the local Tengu was
Kobugahara Hayatoboo 古峯ヶ原隼人坊 Hayato-Bo from Kobugahara
It is not quite clear if he is the person who founded the shrine.
Hayato may have been a disciple of En no Gyoja or a relative of
. Zenkibō 前鬼坊 Zenkibo, Zenki-Bo .
and his wife Goki 後鬼.
.
https://heianperiodjapan.blogspot.jp/2016/10/tengu-cedar-legends.html
.