Miyake Hachimangu Shrine 三宅八幡宮
According to legend, Miyake Hachimangu Shrine was founded by Ono no Imoko (小野 妹子), an important politician and diplomat during the Asuka Period of Japanese history. Ono no Imoko was an envoy to China during the reign of the Empress Suiko and is believed to have delivered a now-famous letter to the Chinese Emperor from Prince Shotoku.
Ono no Imoko reportedly recovered so quickly that he built a shrine to Hachiman, who is associated with the mythical Emperor Ojin, when he returned to central Japan.
The Emperor Ojin is the main deity enshrined at Miyake Hachimangu and Hachiman/Ojin's symbolic animal and messenger is the dove which can be seen on statues, noren curtains and ema (votive plaques) around the shrine. Flocks of pigeons are fed at the shrine by devotees.
The Shinto deity enshrined at Miyake Hachimangu Shrine is believed to cure "peevish" children or those afflicted with mushi - spirits that can cause convulsions.
The shrine is particularly popular on September 15, the day of its autumn festival.
Miyake Hachimangu Shrine Access - how to get to Miyake Hachimangu Shrine in Kyoto
Miyake Hachimangu Shrine
Tel: 075 781 5003
Take an Eiden train from Demachiyanagi Station to Hachiman-mae Station and then a short walk. Alternatively take a Kyoto bus #21 or #23 from Shijo Kawaramachi Station or #24 from Kokusaikaikan on the Kyoto subway to the Hachiman-mae stop.
A trip to Miyake Hachimangu can be combined with visits to nearby Jissoin and the historically important Old Secluded Residence of Iwakura Tomomi.