Mushiokuri Odori

Mushiokuri Odori dance, Shimane, Japan 虫送り

The Mushiokuri Odori dance was part of a religious ceremony called mushi-okuri (literally, insect send-off') that was held to rid the rice paddies of insects, a form of spiritual pest control that has been superseded by Japan's present heavy use of chemical pesticides.

The Mushiokuri Odori dance still takes place in a town called Iwami in central Shimane prefecture (on the far western end of Honshu). Here you can still witness a dance that used to be performed all over the country in earlier times, but has now all but disappeared elsewhere.

Mushiokuri Dancer, Mushiokuri dance, Iwami Town, Shimane, Japan.

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