You must not take a picture of the main sanctuary of a shrine from the front.


When I was a child, a lot of special TV programs were broadcast featuring spiritual phenomena during summer holidays. Most of them were usually broadcast from 12:00 to 15:00. Thinking back now, I’m surprised that television stations in the 1970s to 80s would often broadcast such strange programs in broad daylight.

  • broadcast 放送する
  • feature 特集する
  • phenomena 現象
  • in broad daylight 真っ昼間に

Not scary stories but ghost photographs were most popular in those programs. There was a famous commentator named Mr.N in those days. I thought as a boy that the man who was wearing sunglasses of a pale color was somewhat gloomy. Frankly speaking, I didn’t like him. Though I was an elementary school child, I knew how dangerous such ghost photographs were and if or not they were authentic. Many of them were fake, but some were real ones.

  • scary 怖い
  • ghost photograph 心霊写真
  • in those days 当時は
  • gloomy 陰気な
  • frankly speaking 正直に言うと
  • fake 偽の

I still remember what Mr.N commented in a TV program. One of the ghost photographs introduced there was the one of a small shrine in a dark cave. Diagonally upward in the photograph, there was a big face of Hannya(般若), a female demon with two horns on her forehead, smiling faintly. I trembled to see the face. I felt it was not funny.

  • introduce 紹介する
  • cave 洞穴
  • diagonally upward 斜め上に
  • faintly 微かに
  • tremble 震える

After taking the photo, according to the letter from the contributor of the photo, one of his family members was killed in a car accident and the other members became sickly. When the anchor person of the TV program asked Mr.N for some comments about the picture,  he said frightened “Please forgive me about this picture. I can’t say anything about it.” Then the anchorman said with a disquieting expression “Say something, please. This is a TV show! ” This program was being broadcast live. “If I say anything about this, I’ll be killed, too” he said and shut his mouth. Then a TV commercial cut in abruptly, and when the show resumed, the subject had been changed to another picture.

  • according to A Aによると
  • contibutor 寄稿者
  • sickly 病気がちな
  • anchor person 司会者
  • ask A for B AにBをくれと頼む
  • frightened 怯えながら
  • forgive    勘弁する
  • disquieting 不穏な
  •  live 生で
  • abruptly  突然
  • resume 再開する
  • subject 話題

Remembering this situation, I’ve found that he had a lot of experiences related to ghost photographs. He must have had terrible experiences after he assessed the same kind of pictures. Remembering this photo, I’ve found that this is a shinto shrine in a cave where Kukai(空海)confined an evil, spiritually strong being. Kukai would often confine evil spiritual beings in shrines around the country on condition that he enshrined them as deities. It’s a kind of condition for exchange with evil deities. These shrines appear to be ordinary ones. So ordinary people have no idea whether or not they are right places to pray and apt to think there must be good deities there because their names are deities’. Unfortunately, spiritual beings have existed who eat human souls since ancient times.

  • related 関係した
  • terrible ひどい
  • assess 鑑定する
  • confine 閉じ込める
  • evil 邪悪な
  • condituion 条件
  • enshrine 祭る
  • deity 神
  • exchange 交換
  • ordinary 普通の
  • apt to~   〜しがちな
  • unfortunatley 残念ながら
  • exist 存在する
  • ancient times   古代

Ghost pictures, especially taken with a digital camera, have taken in the ghost’s magnetism. It’s a picture, but it can be said to confine the spiritual body of the ghost in it. I myself take pictures in precincts of shrines, but I never take a picture in front of the main sanctuary of a shrine. I don’t feel like taking one, either. It’s too awful. This awe doesn’t mean “fear” but “respect.”

  • take in A Aを取り込む
  • magnetism    磁気
  • precinct 境内
  • the main sanctuary   本殿
  • feel like ~ing    〜したい気がする
  • awful 恐れ多い

It is one thing to try to depend on deities regarding them as motherly and it is another to respect them. If you take a picture in front of the main sanctuaryo of a shrine, you will get a pictures with some spiritual being in it because Kenzokushins(眷属神) protect holy spirits there. They have no human feelings nor compassion. Once they start to move, they try to accomplish their missions by all means like a machine. They don’t pay respect to human souls.

  • It is one thing to~ and it is another to… 〜するここと…することは別だ
  • depend 頼る
  • regard A as B  AをBとみなす
  • motherly   母性的な
  • feelings 感情
  • compassion 同情
  • accomplish   遂行する
  • mission  任務
  • by all means    なんとしても

If you dare to take a picture in front of the main sanctuary of a shrine despite this warning, suit yourself on your own responsibility. Don’t be panicked if you have taken a picture of “some thing.”

  • dare to~  勇気をもって〜する
  • Suit yourself.    お好きにどうぞ
  • responsibility    責任

生かして頂いて ありがとう御座位ます


Thank you so much for keeping us alive.

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