Osorezan (literally meaning ‘Mountain Fear’) on the Shimokita Peninsula, Aomori Prefecture, at the end of northern Honshu. The scenery reminiscent of “Sanzu River” (a river over which a dead person crosses on the way to Hades), “hell” and “paradise” spreads, and it seems as if you are experiencing a postmortem world.
Osorezan is a sacred place counted in Japan’s three major sacred mountains with Mt. Hiei and Mt. Koya. It seems that the local people have been collecting faith for a long time, saying that the souls of the dead go to Osorezan. According to Buddhism, it is said that the soul of the dead will cross the Sanzu River and head to the next world over the death mountain. In Osorezan, there are “Sanzu River”, “Infinite Hell”, “Blood Pond Hell”, “Paradise Beach”, etc., and you can get a glimpse of the world after death.
Some of you may be afraid of spiritual things. However, many people who visit here say, “I feel refreshed so that my heart is washed,” and it is a mysterious spot. Why don’t you take a peek at the scenery that you wouldn’t see until that time?
The nearest station of Osorezan is Japan Railway Shimokita Station. If you go by Shinkansen, you can go to Shimokita Station using Aoimori Railway from Shin-Aomori Station or Hachinohe Station. From there, take the Shimokita Kotsu Bus for about 45 minutes at Osorezan, or about 25 minutes by car from Mutsu City Center. From Tohoku Expressway Aomori Higashi IC, it takes about 2 hours 30 minutes.
“Osorezan Bodaiji Temple” is said to be one of the most sacred places in Japan. According to the temple legend, Jikaku Daishi of Tendai Sect has arrived in accordance with the dreams of “Thirty days to go east, there is a sacred mountain. Spread Buddhistic cult there.” It is said that it opened in 862.
There are four hot water huts of “Osorezan Hot Springs” in the Osorezan site, warming up tired bodies from the core. People who have visited Osorezan Bodaiji Temple since ancient times have been worshiping after purifying themselves with hot springs. Each has different effects and seems to be effective for gastrointestinal diseases, neuralgia, rheumatism, etc. One of the huts, “Hanazome no Yu”, has a white sinter that swaying in the hot water outlet, so you can be healed not only by your body but also by your eyes.
“Osorezan” may have a scary image from its name. As we introduced, there are spots where you can be healed and relaxed. You can go sightseeing in half a day, so it is recommended that you go sightseeing with other sightseeing spots. The closing season is from November to April, but it is irregular due to snow conditions. For more information, please visit the official website.
Mt. Osorezan is an active volcano that is located in the center of Shimokita Peninsula in Aomori Prefecture and has an altitude of 800 m above sea level and the whole mountain is “Reijo” (sacred place).
The official name is “Osorezan Bodaiji Temple”, and in fact there is no mountain named “Osorezan”.
“Reijo” is the place of faith since ancient times, where the examinees pilgrim. Furthermore, Osorezan is considered to be closest to the land of the dead, and many people are visiting from all over the country as a place to think of the deceased.
In Japanese Buddhism, a river called “Sanzu no kawa.” over which a dead person crosses on the way to Hades. In Osorezan, the river through which it flows from Lake Usoriyama is considered “Sanzu no kawa.” With the weight of the crime committed to the lifetime, it decides on the place to cross, and it is said that there are “those who crosses using a bridge or a ship”, “those who walk along a shoal”, and “those who have to swim in a rapid stream.” It is an impressive sight that the way is shown at the end of the river by the tree as it leads the dead across the river.
Cloth is wrapped around the drum bridge over this river to help the dead going to the land of the dead in the dark. Tourists can cross the bridge, but the opposite shore means Hades, so it is recommended you return without having to cross over.
In the precincts of Osorezan, there is a sightseeing course of about 3 kilometers, and it is possible to go around in about 40 minutes on foot. In the precincts there are 136 “hell” formed of volcanic rocks and it seems to represent the hell receiving the punishment of the crime committed in this world.
The first “hell” spreading is “SAI no KAWARA” (the Children’s Limbo). There are many stones, and it is the atmosphere that has got lost in another world.
The six Jizo (stone statue) in front of the main gate of Osorezan Bodaiji Temple. The world of the Rokugo, which is said to head after death, refers to “Tendo” where many people with good deeds go, people who live with their instincts and desires go on a “demon road”, a person with strong competitive spirit and self-esteem goes to “Shura”, a person who carries evil such as suicide and murder goes there, a greedy man who obsessed with wealth and power. It is said that this six Jizo will save the suffering of the land of the living in each world.
|Address:||Tanabu Usoriyama 3-2 Mutsu, Aomori 035-0021 Japan|
|Access:||JR Ohminato-sen Line “Shimokita-eki Station” (25 minutes by car)|
|Price/Charge:||500 yen (Adult)
200 yen (Junior High School or Elementary School Children)
Please refer the official web page.