Fushimi Inari Taisha


Paying Respects

Paying Respects

There are many rules to paying respects at a shrine. These rules are a symbolic representation of respect to the kami spirits, so it's important to pay respects in a way that is not offensive to the kami. The shrine precinct is a holy place where the kami resides. When entering and exiting the shrine, face the torii and make a bow to the diety.

Temizu (washing hands with water)

At shrines, impurity is the most detested thing, so it's important to first purify oneself with the temizu. The temizu water fountain is thought of as a shortened version of ablutions performed in a river or in the sea.
First take the scoop in your right hand, scoop some water, and purify your left hand. Then take the scoop in your left hand and purify the right hand, then return it to the right hand, pour some water into your left hand, and use it to rinse your mouth. Don't drink directly from the scoop.
When spitting out the water, bend over and conceal your mouth with your hand. Finally hold the scoop vertically and use the remaining water to purify the handle of the scoop, then return it to its position for the next person. It is a Japanese custom to purify your body and soul before going before the kami.

Purify the left hand

Purify the right hand

Receive water in the left hand

Rinse the mouth

Purify the handle

Lay the dipper face down


When you come to the front of the main shrine, purify yourself by ringing the bell, then gently put an offering of coins into the box without throwing them. Then, bow twice, clap twice, then bow again. Bowing is done by bending 90 degrees at the waist and bowing your head deeply twice. Then clap twice and pray quietly for a moment before bowing your head once more. After paying respects at the main shrine, pay respects at the other minor shrines, the inner shrine, and to Mt. Inari. This is the correct method for paying homage.
If you want to make sure your feelings are communicated properly to the kami, it's recommended to have prayers said for you at the main shrine. The application process is simple, and can be done at the registration counter to the left of the main shrine.

Put offering in the box

Bow twice (bend at a 90 degree angle)

Clap twice

Bow once