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Searching the Seas with the Tenkei (天瓊を以て滄海を探るの図 Tenkei o motte sōkai o saguru no zu?). Painting by Kobayashi Eitaku, 1880-90 (MFA, Boston). Izanagi to the right, Izanami to the left.

In Japanese mythology, Izanami-no-Mikoto, also given as 伊弉冉尊 or 伊邪那美命, meaning "she who invites" is a goddess of both creation and death, as well as the former wife of the god Izanagi-no-Mikoto. She is also referred to as Izanami-no-kami.

Contents

Goddess of Creation

The first gods Kunitokotachi and Amenominakanushi summoned two divine beings into existence, the male Izanagi and the female Izanami, and charged them with creating the first land. To help them do this, Izanagi and Izanami were given a spear decorated with jewels, named Ame-no-nuboko (heavenly spear). The two deities then went to the bridge between heaven and earth, Ame-no-ukihashi ("floating bridge of heaven"), and churned the sea below with the spear. When drops of salty water fell from the spear, Onogoroshima ("self-forming island") was created. They descended from the bridge of heaven and made their home on the island.

Eventually they wished to be mated, so they built a pillar called Ame-no-mihashira ("pillar of heaven"; the mi- is an honorific prefix) and around it they built a palace called Yahiro-dono (one hiro is approximately 182 cm, so the "eight-hiro-palace" would have been 14.56 m²). Izanagi and Izanami circled the pillar in opposite directions and, when they met on the other side, Izanami spoke first in greeting. Izanagi didn't think that this was the proper thing to do, but they mated anyhow. They had two children, Hiruko ("leech-child") and Awashima ("faint island"), but they were born deformed and are not considered deities.

They put the children into a boat and set them out to sea, then petitioned the other gods for an answer as to what they did wrong. They were told that the male deity should have spoken first in greeting during the marriage ceremony. So Izanagi and Izanami went around the pillar again, this time Izanagi speaking first when they meet, and their marriage was finally successful.

From their union were born the ōyashima, or the "great eight islands" of the Japanese chain:

Note that Hokkaidō, Chishima and Okinawa were not part of Japan in ancient times.

They bore six more islands and many deities. Izanami died giving birth to the child Kagu-Tsuchi (incarnation of fire) or Ho-Masubi (causer of fire). She was then buried on Mt. Hiba, at the border of the old provinces of Izumo and Hōki, near modern-day Yasugi of Shimane Prefecture. So angry was Izanagi at the death of his wife that he killed the newborn child, thereby creating dozens of deities.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japan_mythology - Japan Mythology(for reference)

Death of the Izanami-no-Mikoto

Izanagi-no-Mikoto lamented the death of Izanami-no-Mikoto and undertook a journey to Yomi ("the shadowy land of the dead"). Quickly, he searched for Izanami-no-Mikoto and found her. At first, Izanagi-no-Mikoto could not see her at all for the shadows hid her appearance well. Nevertheless, he asked her to return with him. Izanami-no-Mikoto spat out at him, informing Izanagi-no-Mikoto that he was too late. She had already eaten the food of the underworld and was now one with the land of the dead. She could no longer return to the living.

Izanagi-no-Mikoto was shocked at this news but he refused to give in to her wishes of being left to the dark embrace of Yomi. While Izanami-no-Mikoto was sleeping, he took the comb that bound his long hair and set it alight as a torch. Under the sudden burst of light, he saw the horrid form of the once beautiful and graceful Izanami-no-Mikoto. She was now a rotting form of flesh with maggots and foul creatures running over her ravaged body.

Crying out loud, Izanagi-no-Mikoto could no longer control his fear and started to run, intending to return to the living and abandon his death-ridden wife. Izanami-no-Mikoto woke up shrieking and indignant and chased after him. Wild shikome (foul women) also hunted for the frightened Izanagi-no-Mikoto, instructed by Izanami-no-Mikoto to bring him back.

Izanagi-no-Mikoto burst out of the entrance and quickly pushed a boulder in the mouth of the Yomotsuhirasaka (黄泉津平坂; cavern that was the entrance of Yomi). Izanami-no-Mikoto screamed from behind this impenetrable barricade and told Izanagi-no-Mikoto that if he left her she would destroy 1,000 residents of the living every day. He furiously replied he would give life to 1,500.

Izanami-no-Mikoto in popular culture

Main Article: Shinto (pop culture)

References

  • Reader, Ian (2008). Simple Guides: Shinto. Kuperard. p. 53-55. ISBN 1857334337. 

Template:Shintoism |天瓊を以て滄海を探るの図|Tenkei o motte sōkai o saguru no zu}}. Painting by Kobayashi Eitaku, 1880-90 (MFA, Boston). Izanagi to the right, Izanami to the left.]] In Japanese mythology, Izanami (イザナミ?, also given as 伊弉冉尊 or 伊邪那美命, meaning "she who invites") is a goddess of both creation and death, as well as the former wife of the god Izanagi. She is also referred to as Izana-mi, Izanami-no-mikoto or Izanami-no-kami.

Contents

Goddess of Creation

The first gods Kunitokotachi and Amenominakanushi summoned two divine beings into existence, the male Izanagi and the female Izanami, and charged them with creating the first land. To help them do this, Izanagi and Izanami were given a spear decorated with jewels, named Ame-no-nuboko (heavenly spear). The two deities then went to the bridge between heaven and earth, Ame-no-ukihashi ("floating bridge of heaven"), and churned the sea below with the spear. When drops of salty water fell from the spear, Onogoroshima ("self-forming island") was created. They descended from the bridge of heaven and made their home on the island.

Eventually they wished to be mated, so they built a pillar called Ame-no-mihashira ("pillar of heaven"; the mi- is an honorific prefix) and around it they built a palace called Yahiro-dono (one hiro is approximately 182 cm, so the "eight-hiro-palace" would have been 14.56 m²). Izanagi and Izanami circled the pillar in opposite directions and, when they met on the other side, Izanami spoke first in greeting. Izanagi didn't think that this was the proper thing to do, but they mated anyhow. They had two children, Hiruko ("leech-child") and Awashima ("faint island"), but they were born deformed and are not considered deities.

They put the children into a boat and set them out to sea, then petitioned the other gods for an answer as to what they did wrong. They were told that the male deity should have spoken first in greeting during the marriage ceremony. So Izanagi and Izanami went around the pillar again, this time Izanagi speaking first when they meet, and their marriage was finally successful.

From their union were born the ōyashima, or the "great eight islands" of the Japanese chain:

Note that Hokkaidō, Chishima and Okinawa were not part of Japan in ancient times.

They bore six more islands and many deities. Izanami died giving birth to the child Kagu-Tsuchi (incarnation of fire) or Ho-Masubi (causer of fire). She was then buried on Mt. Hiba, at the border of the old provinces of Izumo and Hōki, near modern-day Yasugi of Shimane Prefecture. So angry was Izanagi at the death of his wife that he killed the newborn child, thereby creating dozens of deities.

Goddess of Death

Izanagi lamented the death of Izanami and undertook a journey to Yomi ("the shadowy land of the dead"). Quickly, he searched for Izanami and found her. At first, Izanagi could not see her at all for the shadows hid her appearance well. Nevertheless, he asked her to return with him. Izanami spat out at him, informing Izanagi that he was too late. She had already eaten the food of the underworld and was now one with the land of the dead. She could no longer return to the living.

Izanagi was shocked at this news but he refused to give in to her wishes of being left to the dark embrace of Yomi. While Izanami was sleeping, he took the comb that bound his long hair and set it alight as a torch. Under the sudden burst of light, he saw the horrid form of the once beautiful and graceful Izanami. She was now a rotting form of flesh with maggots and foul creatures running over her ravaged body.

Crying out loud, Izanagi could no longer control his fear and started to run, intending to return to the living and abandon his death-ridden wife. Izanami woke up shrieking and indignant and chased after him. Wild shikome (foul women) also hunted for the frightened Izanagi, instructed by Izanami to bring him back.

Izanagi burst out of the entrance and quickly pushed a boulder in the mouth of the Yomotsuhirasaka (黄泉津平坂; cavern that was the entrance of Yomi). Izanami screamed from behind this impenetrable barricade and told Izanagi that if he left her she would destroy 1,000 residents of the living every day. He furiously replied he would give life to 1,500.

The story has strong parallels with the Greek Myths of Orpheus and Eurydice, as well as to the myth of Persephone and Demeter, the Maya myth of Itzamna and Ix Chel, and the Akkadian/Sumerian myth of Inanna's Descent to the Underworld. The Shikome, for instance, are parallel to the Maenads who tore Orpheus to pieces.

Izanami in popular culture

  • In the Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG, Izanami is depicted as a duel monster that works together with spirit type monsters. She is depicted in the card's artwork in her creator goddess form before her death.
  • Izanami is featured in Persona 4 as well as Izanagi
  • Both Izanagi and Izanami are important characters in the first Megami Tensei title.
  • Izanagi and Izanami (Nagi and Nami in the North American localization) appear as characters in the video game Ōkami, in which Izanami is a sake brewer and Izanagi is a well-intentioned but bumbling swordsman, who defeats the monster Yamata no Orochi (Orochi in the North American localization) 100 years before the main events of the game to spare Izanami's life, with the help of Shiranui, a wolf incarnation of the Shinto sun goddess Amaterasu.
  • Izanami appears in the role-playing game Scion
  • Izanami named weapons appear in the Izuna: The Legend of the Unemployed Ninja series, as well as Izanagi. The weapons also appeared in the sequel, Izuna 2: The Unemployed Ninja Returns.

References


Wiktionary

Up to date as of January 15, 2010

Definition from Wiktionary, a free dictionary

Contents

English

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Wikipedia

Etymology

From Japanese 伊邪那美 (izanami).

Proper noun

Singular
Izanami

Plural
-

Izanami

  1. (mythology, Shintoism) A Japanese creator goddess.

See also


Wikispecies

Up to date as of January 23, 2010

From Wikispecies

Taxonavigation

Main Page
Cladus: Eukaryota
Supergroup: Unikonta
Cladus: Opisthokonta
Regnum: Animalia
Subregnum: Eumetazoa
Cladus: Bilateria
Cladus: Nephrozoa
Cladus: Protostomia
Cladus: Ecdysozoa
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Crustacea
Classis: Malacostraca
Subclassis: Eumalacostraca
Superordo: Eucarida
Ordo: Decapoda
Subordo: Pleocyemata
Infraordo: Brachyura
Sectio: Eubrachyura
Subsectio: Heterotremata
Superfamilia: Calappoidea
Familia: Matutidae
Genus: Izanami
Species: I. curtispina - I. inermis

Name

Izanami Galil & Clark, 1994

References

  • Galil B.S. & Clark P. F., (1994). A revision of the genus Matuta Weber, 1795 (Crustacea:Brachyura:Calappidae). Zoologische Verhandelingen, 294:1-55.

Simple English

Izanami is a goddess of both creation and death in Japanese mythology.

Japanese Mythology & Folklore

Mythic Texts and Folktales:
Kojiki | Nihon Shoki | Otogizōshi | Yotsuya Kaidan
Urashima Tarō | Kintarō | Momotarō | Tamamo-no-Mae
Divinities:
Izanami | Izanagi | Amaterasu
Susanoo | Ama-no-Uzume | Inari
List of divinities | Kami | Seven Lucky Gods
Legendary Creatures:
Oni | Kappa | Tengu | Tanuki | Fox | Yōkai | Dragon
Mythical and Sacred Places:
Mt. Hiei | Mt. Fuji | Izumo | Ryūgū-jō | Takamagahara | Yomi









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