Toyoke, lord of the northern provinces (celebrated today as the tutelary deity of the Ise Outer Shrine), drew up a chart using 51 phonetic symbols to represent the 49 deities residing in the heavens. This he presented to his daughter Isanami and her spouse Isanagi, 8th in the line of divine rulers of Japan.
Amateru, son of Isanagi and Isanami, had his nobles compose poems based on Toyoke's chart. From these, he selected 128, which were then set down as the Futomani Book of Divination (the origin of Shinto divination rituals).
The symbols A-U-WA in the inner circle represent Amemiwoya, the creator of heaven and earth.
The Amemiwoya (August Heavenly Ancestor) deity
TO-HO-KA-MI-YE-HI-TA-ME in the first inner ring are the eight deities who create the human soul, connect it to the physical form, and govern the span of human life.
The Amoto (Heavenly Origin) deities
A-I-HU-HE-MO-WO-SU-SI in the second inner ring are the deities who govern the cardinal directions, language, and human organs.
The Anami (Heavenly Parity) deities
The thirty-two symbols in the two outer rings govern the outer form of humans and protect day and night.
The Misofu (Thirty-Two) deities
Copyright 2001 (c) Hotsumatsutae Japan All Rights Reserved.
This site is operated and maintained by the Japan Translation Center, Ltd.
The contents of this site may be freely reproduced or published, but may not be used for sale or any other directly commercial purpose.Anyone wishing to reproduce or publish the contents of this site should first contact firstname.lastname@example.org