Sometimes he has horns, while other times he simply has wild, gravity-defying hair. Jansen, Marius B. Raijin and Fujin are also protectors of temples and other holy places, which is why their statues often are placed at the gates to such buildings. The ones that most attracted my attention are the "representations" in figures where they are reproduced with their original "forms" or even translated on important and known characters of anime and manga where they "imitate" their poses and their powers. Raijin (雷神) is the Japanese god of storms, a chaotic being born of death who brings the world vital rains as well as chaos and destruction. Sai reduces a party members HP to 1. Retrieved from Ono, Sokyo. The three fingers represent the past, present and future respectively. Junction Blind or Sleep to status attacks. Myths. The figure of Raijin is often associated with another divinity, also connected to meteorological events, Fujin 風神, the God of the Wind.He is represented as a demon, also an Oni, who uses a long "sheet" with which he creates the wind. Raijin, being born from the two main deities, is part of the great Japanese mythological family, with direct links with very important deities such as Fujin (the god of the wind), Kagutsuchi (the god of fire), Susanoo (the god of the sea and storms ) and Amaterasu (the sun goddess). “Raijin.” Mythopedia. In Japanese art, the deity is often depicted together with Raijin, the god of lightning, thunder and storms. Along with his brother Fujin (the god of wind) Raijin is pretty much responsible for all the bad weather that hits Japan and, as a series of islands, Japan gets a LOT of bad weather. The cultural influence has also had a notable effect in the West, with video games, films and other media depicting characters that are clearly inspired by Raijin. Learn more. Raijin is the son of Izanami and Izanagi, the progenitors of the Japanese gods. Copyright © 2019 Fukai Nihon. Wright, Gregory. The Raijin and Fujin sculptures in Sanjusangendo are considered national treasures. After she went to the underworld, her husband Izanagi went after her. Raijin and Fujin are always depicted together, thus making the two deities deeply connected. Raijin is both feared and admired by the Japanese. These are often seen as destructive actions, but at times can be good. This story may stem from Raijin’s origins in Yomi, where his birth was unnatural. Raijin is one of the most important gods in Japanese mythology and one scary-looking guy. The Making of Modern Japan. Wright, Gregory. Gregory Wright, “Raijin,” Mythopedia, accessed , Among the most important and well-known deities in Japan, Raijin and Fujin through the centuries have always had an important presence in Japanese culture and society. In the anime movie Pom Poko, Raijin and Fujin illusions are created to scare off the occupants of the Tama Hills developments, who are more entertained than scared. Raijin 雷神 and Fujin 風神 the God of Thunder and the God of Wind. Please note that if you reject them, you may not be able to use all the functionalities of the site. He is usually depicted as a big, muscular figure (although sculptors do like to give him a potbelly) with a terrifying face. Raijin is the direct offspring of Izanagi and Izanami, the two gods who descended from heaven to create the islands of Japan. Raijin. Raijin and Fujin reside side by side in the Kaminarimon gate that guards the entrance to the Sanjusangendo temple. The existence of thunder gods in various belief systems is very common, especially among islander people, and you’ll find a long list of them across different cultures. In some popular medieval stories about the failed Mongol invasions of Japan in 1274 and 1281, Raijin and Fujin were responsible for the typhoons that sank the Mongol ships and prevented invasion. Raijin is one of the many gods born from these two deities after they created Japan. We use cookies on our website. There are a great many kami in Japanese mythology, but understandably the awesome natural forces of storms would lead the Japanese to believe that a particular important kami was behind them. When the Mongols attempted to invade Japan in 1274, a storm destroyed much of their fleet, a feat attributed to the twin gods as an act of defending Japan. Also born of the two main deities, he is the brother of Raijin with often fights in the sky and with whom he often shares the classic iconography where they are both represented. He is often portrayed as a demon-like spirit with a red head and green skin. The figure of Raijin is often associated with another divinity, also connected to meteorological events, Fujin 風神, the God of the Wind. Some of them are essential for the operation of the site, while others help us to improve this site and the user experience (tracking cookies). He is represented as a demon, an Oni, with drums. Raijin’s name of Raiden is the basis of the character Raiden in the Metal Gear Solid video game series*.*. Raijin is the master of thunder and lightning, controlling the power of storms. According to Kojiki, Fujin including his brother Raijin was born from Izanami after she died. One of the legends connected to him tells of when the Goddess Izanami ordered him to chase the God Izanagi, who escaped from Yomi because he was "disgusted" by the decaying and decaying appearance of Izanami. Raijin also fulfills a similar role and temperament to El (also called YHWH), a Semitic storm deity worshiped by the Hebrews. He is represented as a demon, also an Oni, who uses a long "sheet" with which he creates the wind. Raijin often makes cameo appearances throughout popular culture, including: In the manga/anime InuYasha, supernatural creatures (yokai) that look like Raijin and Fujin appear several times in large crowds. According to Kojiki, Fujin (Shina-Tsu-Hiko) was born from Izanami. However, his rivalry with his brother Fujin as they battle for rulership of the sky is legendary. Raijin is represented in Kanji as 雷神, a combination of 雷 (kaminari), meaning “thunder,” and 神 (kami), meaning “god” or “spirit.” Thus, he is simply the Thunder God. in East Asian Studies from the University of Texas at Austin. Raijin has innumerable brothers and sisters, as all the Kami in Japan descend one way or another from Izanami and Izanagi. Despite this, he is often depicted with a traditional Buddhist halo, a common motif around figures that are holy or divine. These sculptures are made of wood with lacquer, gold leaf and paint along with crystal, inlaid eyes. While there is much art featuring Raijin, his most famous depiction is at Sanjusangen-do, a Buddhist temple in Kyoto, where statues of Raijin and Fujin guard the entrance. in this case we have the characters of the Naruto series, but you can find many other series in which Raijin and Fujin are taken as an example in their classic combat poses. While he is widely respected, feared and seen as an Oni, or demon, the Japanese see Raijin as a good spirit. After all, Japan was created by his mother and father, and the islands themselves are Kami and therefore his brothers and sisters. Ultimately the invasion was repelled and Japan protected. In some parts of Japan, he is known as Raiden and is shown simply as a robed man with a straw hat. By breaking down the two Kanji that compose his name, it turns out that the word Rai 雷 can be translated with "thunder" while shin 神 as divinity, God. Fujin will use Wind magics and physical attacks. Middle: Wind God from Kizil, Tarim Basin, 7th century. Another story describes Raijin as a mischief-maker and being of destruction, causing the emperor to order Sugaru the God-Catcher to imprison Raijin. When drought came to Japan, it was said that Raijin was either slacking off or imprisoned, as depicted in one kabuki play. The Shinto religion is strongly based on the idea that everything we see in nature has a spirit or kami. His connection to Yomi, the Land of the Dead, is part of his being, made clear through his horrific appearance. Sugaru first petitioned Raijin in the name of the emperor to give himself over willingly, to which Raijin responded with laughter. Raijin is the bringer of rain, a boon to farmers. In the UltraMan media series, the characters of Raijin and Fujin are based on their divine counterparts. You’ll find terrifying statues of Raijin all over Japan and no matter where you go you’ll eventually have to walk under his intense gaze. Mythopedia. Raijin and Fujin are always depicted together, thus making the two deities deeply connected. Moveset. Raijin is one of the eldest gods among all Shinto gods. Raijin is an important part of Japanese life and culture as the people of Japan still live with the reality of storms, just as they have always done. He is always in the company of Fujin, the god of winds; his son, Raitaro; and occasionally the thunder beast, Raiju.