The Shinto Kanamara Matsuri (かなまら祭り, "Festival of the Steel Phallus") is held each spring at the Kanayama Shrine (金山神社 Kanayama-jinja) in Kawasaki, Japan. The exact dates vary: the main festivities fall on the first Sunday in April. The phallus, as the central theme of the event, is reflected in illustrations, candy, carved vegetables, decorations, and a mikoshi parade.
A crowd gathers at Kanamara Matsuri festival.
|Observed by||Kanayama shrine, Kawasaki, Japan|
|Date||First Sunday in April|
|2017 date||April 2|
|2018 date||April 1|
|2019 date||April 7|
|2020 date||April 5|
The Kanamara Matsuri is centered on a local penis-venerating shrine. The legend being that a jealous sharp-toothed demon hid inside the vagina of a young woman the demon fell in love with and bit off penises of two young men on their wedding nights. After that the woman sought help from a blacksmith, who fashioned an iron phallus to break the demon's teeth, which led to the enshrinement of the item. This legend in Ainu language was published as "The Island of Women" by Basil Hall Chamberlain
It is also said the shrine offers divine protections for business prosperity, and for the clan's prosperity; and for easy delivery, marriage, and married-couple harmony.
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- 世界も驚くニッポン旅行100: テーマでめぐる!47都道府県ローカル旅 PHP研究所, Jul 4, 2013
- "Kanamara-Matsuri | World's weirdest festivals". Herald Sun.[dead link]
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kanamara Festival.|
- A day at the Kanamara Matsuri in Yamasaki
- The shrine's festival webpage (Japanese)
- A report of the event (illustrated)
- Another report (unillustrated)
- A picture of the object of veneration
- Kanamara Matsuri Video
- Explanation of the history of the festival with a detailed schedule of the festivities.
- Photo-Chronicle Kanamara Matsuri (Festival of Fertility) of Polizon.
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