Kamidana 神棚 & 仏壇 Butsudan

This dojo is design after dojo in the 神仏習合 - Shinbutsu-shūgō periods of Japan, where it was common for a both Kamidana and a Butsudan to found in a family house and/or dojo. 神仏習合 - Shinbutsu-shūgō periods of Japan are the period where Buddhism and Shinto blended together.


What is a Kamidana?

Kamidana (神棚 kami-dana?, lit. "god-shelf") are miniature household altars provided to enshrine a Shinto kami. They are most commonly found in Japan, the home of kami worship.[1]

The kamidana is typically placed high on a wall and contains a wide variety of items related to Shinto-style ceremonies, the most prominent of which is the shintai, an object meant to house a chosen kami, thus giving it a physical form to allow worship. Kamidana shintai[2] are most commonly small circular mirrors, though they can also be stones (magatama), jewels, or some other object with largely symbolic value. The kami within the shintai is often the deity of the local shrine or one particular to the house owner's profession. A part of the kami (bunrei) was obtained specifically for that purpose from a shrine through a process called kanjō.[3]

Worship at the kamidana typically consists of the offering of simple prayers, food (e.g., rice, fruit, water) and flowers.[4]Before worshiping at the kamidana it is ritually important for family members to cleanse their hands.


What us a Butsudan?

A butsudan (佛壇 or 仏壇, literally "Buddhist altar") is a shrine commonly found in temples and homes in Japanese Buddhistcultures.[1] A butsudan is a wooden cabinet with doors that enclose and protect a gohonzon or religious icon, typically a statue or painting of a Buddha or Bodhisattva, or a "script" mandala scroll. The doors are opened to display the icon during religious observances, and closed before sunset. A butsudan usually contains an array of subsidiary religious items, calledbutsugu, such as candlesticks, incense burners, bells, and platforms for placing offerings such as fruit, tea or rice. Some Buddhist sects place ihai, memorial tablets for deceased relatives, within or near the butsudan.[2]

Our Shrine

Tsubaki Grand Shrine (椿大神社 Tsubaki Ōkami Yashiro?) is a Shinto shrine in Suzuka, Mie Prefecture, Japan. Tsubaki is the principal shrine of the deity Sarutahiko-no-Ōkami and one of Japan's oldest shrines. Sarutahiko no Ōkami's wife Ame-no-Uzume is also enshrined at the jinja.

The shrine has been in the care of the Yamamoto family for 97 generations. The 95th generation guardian priest was Rev. Yukiteru Yamamoto, the 96th generation priest was Rev. Yukitaka Yamamoto, and the 97th generation priest is Rev. Yukiyasu Yamamoto.

Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America (sometimes known as Tsubaki America Jinja or in Japanese as amerika tsubaki ōkamiyashiro (アメリカ椿大神社?) is the first Shinto shrine built in the mainland United States after World War II. It was erected in 1987 in Stockton, California and moved to its current location in Granite Falls, Washington in 2001.[1]

Gosaijin (enshrined Kami/Spirits) of Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America are Sarutahiko-no-Ōkami, ancestor of all earthly Kami and Kami of progressing positively in harmony with Divine Nature; and his wife Ame-no-Uzume-no-Mikoto, Kami of arts and entertainment, harmony, meditation and joy. Also enshrined are Amaterasu Ōmikami (Kami of the Sun), Ugamitama-no-Ōkami (Kami of foodstuffs and things to sustain human life/Oinarisama), America Kokudo Kunitama-no-Kami (protector of the North America Continent) and Ama-no-Murakumo-Kuki-Samuhara-Ryu-O (Kami of Aikido).

Tsubaki Grand Shrine of America is a branch of Tsubaki Ōkami Yashiro, one of the oldest and most notable shrines in Japan, which celebrated its 2000th anniversary in 1997.

The current Guji (Head Priest) is Rev. Koichi Barrish, the second non-Japanese priest in Shinto history.