How to worship at temples and shrines

In Japan, there are many shrines and temples. If you have a chance to go to Kyoto, you will encounter countless shrines and temples. Shrines worship Japan’s gods while temples worship Buddha of Buddhism. You can differentiate them by looking at the entrance; the one with torii is a shrine and the one with a sanmon and statues is a temple.

Before praying, one has to clean your hands at mitarashi. In addition, one also has to rinse one’s mouth although many do not do. This is not because to clean physical dirtiness; this is because to clean the dirtiness of this world, thus one should not leave this out even though they think they are clean.

How to pray at temples is easier; just put money (usually coins) and worship with folded hands. However, shrines are stricter and a little bit complex. The right way is called “nirei nihakushu ichirei” and you bow twice, clap your hands twice, worship with folded hands, and then bow once more before leaving.

【how to worship】

(1) Walk to the god and slightly bow
(2) Put some coins and ring the bell
(3) Bow twice
(4) Clap your hands twice and pray with folded hands
(5) Bow once more
(6) Slightly bow and leave

After mastering how to worship gods, which can be difficult for some Japanese, please come to Sakura Currency Service since we can tell you what shrines and temples can bring you better luck.