April 29th, 2016
Today was spent at the Buddhist temple Hokoji for the annual Yamabushi fire festival! Situated in Kōshū, Yamanashi Prefecture, this is a beautiful temple known as the flower temple as it is famous for its year-round flower gardens!
The festival started with a reanactment of hiking up a mountain as it says in the name Yamabushi, Yama means mountain and Bushi is a warrior or samurai! After the reanactment that invovled walking through the town to a locals house and saying some words the main part of the festival began!
Back to the temple and starting the ritual for the fire to be lit.
It began with chanting then shooting arrows into the crowd(no humams were harmed in this shooting), then followed by blessings and more chanting.
The fire was lit and the clothes started to come off!
Then one by one the Yamabushi walked through the hot coals, after they had finished everyone else at the festival got the oppurtunity. Of course I went for it! Hot on my heals (quite literally) was my good friend Bendik walking through the hot coals!
After walking throuh fire we explored more of the temple.
Then it was off to the onsen we go, to wash our smoky bodies and what a view of Fuji-san!
Thanks for reading/looking guys!