Kinan Guide on the Go


The Nagi Tree of Kumano Hayatama Taisha

Content Number:20606

The Nagi Tree of Kumano Hayatama Taisha
The nagi tree is sacred to Kumano Gongen. It is believed that the leaves gain talismanic properties when fixed to something like a hat and protect pilgrims on their way back home. Although the nagi is a conifer belonging to the maki genus, this tree has wide leaves like those of a broadleaf tree. The leaves have many fine flat veins along their length, but no midrib. Due to this unusual structure, a nagi leaf can easily be torn lengthwise but even a dry leaf cannot be torn crosswise. The nagi is also known by such names as ""kozounakase"" and ""chikarashiba"". Apparently there was a custom whereby a woman would place a leaf in the back of her mirror so that, like the robust leaf, the karmic link with the man she loved would not be severed.

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Kumano Hayatama Taisha
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