Iruka-jinja Shrine (入鹿神社)

Iruka-jinja Shrine is located in Shoko-cho, Kashihara City, Nara Prefecture. Another name is Sogatsuhiko-jinja Shrine.

It enshrines SOGA no Iruka and Susanoo. Susanoo has been enshrined since the Meiji period.

Its shintai (an object of worship believed to contain the spirit of a deity) is a seated wooden statue of SOGA no Iruka. The place around present-day Kashihara City has connections with the SOGA clan and there are place names such as 'soga' (蘇我) and 'soga' (曽我). Sogatsuhiko-jinja Shrine, which was built by SOGA no Umako and enshrines the founder of the SOGA clan, was in Soga-cho, next to Shoko-cho.

During the Meiji period, under the view of Kokokushikan (historical view to put the Imperial family in the center of the Japanese history), the government insisted it was inappropriate that SOGA no Iruka, who was a traitor, was enshrined as a god. Therefore, the government proposed that enshrined god should be changed to Susanoo and the name of the shrine should be renamed 'Shoko-jinja Shrine' after the name of the place, but local residents rejected it. Nowadays, 'the theory of the rebels, the SOGA clan' based on Nihonshoki (Chronicles of Japan) is commonly accepted in Japanese history, but even so, to this day, the shrine has received veneration from the local residents.

In its precincts, Buttkizan Fugen-ji Temple was built as Jingu-ji Temple and it enshrined Dainichi Nyorai (Mahavairocana). During Haibutsu kishaku (historic movements of abolishing Buddhism and destroying Buddhist temples and images), Fugen-ji Temple was abolished.
However, the buildings and the principal icon of the Buddhist temple were left and maintained by Joto-zan Shorenji-Temple and exist as the name of 'Dainichi-do.'
Dainichi-do and the wooden statue of Dainichi Nyorai are National important cultural assets.

[Original Japanese]