What is Oinari-san?
Fushimi Inari Taisha Outline
Fushimi Inari Taisha is said to have begun as a shrine to Inari Okami on Hatsuuma no Hi (the first horse day in February), 711, and it is worshipped as a guardian deity of the harvest, business success, and peace and prosperity in the household.
There are many fox statues within the shrine precincts. Many people mistakenly believe that the shrine is dedicated to foxes, but in fact the foxes are the servants for Inari Okami. Although they are foxes, they are not wild foxes, but in fact they are believed to be fox spirits that tell our wishes to Inari Okami. Each of these fox statues holds in its mouth an object connected to Inari Okami, such as a sheaf of rice stalks, a rice granary key, an orb, or a scroll.
Almost all of the buildings and torii gates within the grounds of the shrine are painted vermilion. Since ancient times, vermilion has been thought to be resistant against magic, and it is a color that represents the life force.
There are approximately ten thousand large and small torii gates within the mountain, and they are offerings from worshippers from around the country, symbolizing their wishes and gratitude. Torii gates represent hopes that a wish will come true, or gratitude about a wish that came true.