Astrology, Magic & Pilgrimage
I spent 3 weeks in Japan, in late September and early October 2013. The trip combined astrology lectures, astrological magic workshops and pilgrimage to Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines. It would have been impossible without my good friend, student and guide, Munehisa Yoshigaki, who is a top Japanese professional astrologer.
I lectured on traditional astrology in Tokyo and Osaka and then we did two astrological magic workshops where the participants created talismans in Tokyo. I was very pleased and gratified at the enthusiasm of the participants!
At the first astrological magic workshop we created Jupiter talismans and at the second, we made 3rd Leo Face talismans.
I was privileged to meet some of the top Japanese practitioners of Western astrology, tarot and magic, Munehisa-san has very cool friends!
One of the highlights of the trip was visiting Koyasan, the sacred mountain headquarters of the Shingon School of Japanese tantric Buddhism. We stayed there at Muryokoin (Limitless Light Temple) which provides shukubo, traditional temple accommodation for pilgrims. At Koyasan I did jukai, taking the Boddhisatva precepts, in the Shingon School as well as received the kechien kanjo, lay tantric initiation.
I enjoyed visiting Soji-ji, one of the two head monasteries of Soto Zen. I was particularly pleased that I was able to get on the Yokohama subway, get to Yokohama Station (huge, labyrinthine!) and then get on the train to Soji-ji, get to Soji-ji from the train station and then back. I later realized that I could have taken the train directly!
One of the most enjoyable surprises was visiting the branch of Myogonji Temple (Toyokawa Inari Shrine) in Tokyo. Inari, the kami of rice, the harvest and wealth, is one of my favorite kami and I made a point of visiting Inari shrines throughout Japan. Inari shrines are distinguished by red torii (gates) and kitsune, the fox messengers/attendants of Inari. Traditionally Shinto and Buddhism were very mixed in Japan, but during the late 19th century Meiji period they were forcibly separated. Myogonji is a rare example of traditional mixing since it is a Buddhist temple with hundreds and hundreds of fox shrines and even a toad shrine! I was suprised to discover that Myogonji is a Soto Zen temple and so combines my Zen lineage with my favorite kami, Inari.
I look forward to returning regularly to Japan!
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Specializing in Horary Astrology, Electional Astrology Astrological Magic and Astrological Talismans.
Copyright 2013, Christopher Warnock, All Rights Reserved.