Daijingu Temple: By Contrast


Entrance to the Daijingu Temple in Nuuanu.


This shrine looks more like a large residence than a traditional Shinto shrine.

The Daijngu Temple, a Shinto Shrine in Nuuanu, does not have a traditional-looking torii, as you can see in the photo to the right, above. This shrine’s torii does not have the horizontal post over two vertical pillars, as is typical at most shrines. Rather there are two long rectangular pillars joined by a thick, braided rope with white paper streamers hanging from them. Visitors walk between the pillars and under the rope to enter the shrine grounds into the a garden-like environment. This shrine has a more modern look to it, with fewer traditional Japanese architectural elements than other Shinto shrines on Oahu. In fact the shrine building itself looks more like a part of a large residence than it does a religious structure. However, there are many other elements of this shrine that reflect Shinto values and practices. Note: Usually the word “shrine” is used for Shinto structures, whereas “temple” is used for Buddhist structures. In this case, the word “temple” is used for a Shinto shrine. The photos below, from left to right, show 1) the altar of the Daijingu Temple, 2) one of two animal guardian statues; 3) this omikuji box allows visitors to drop a quarter into it and receive a printed fortune. The fortune can be tied to a nearby tree.


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