Yomotsu Hirasaka is known as the border between the land of the living and the land of the dead, and is the setting for the myth of Izanagi and Izanami. When Izanami died giving birth to the god of fire, she was buried in the land of the dead. Izanagi was very upset and rushed to the gates of the land of the dead and begged her to return. She said she would, on condition that he did not look at her. Izanagi could not bear the wait however, and with the tooth of a comb made a fire and peered into the gate. There he saw Izanami’s body covered in maggots and surrounded by the eight gods of thunder. Izanami was so upset at his betrayal that she, along with the gods, chased him back, and he only managed to escape by putting a large boulder between them. This boulder remains to this day here, in Yomotsu Hirasaka. It is said that if you step beyond the boulder into the woodland, you enter the land of the dead…
Yomotsu Hirasaka is about a 15 minute walk from Iya Shrine, which is dedicated to Izanami.
- It is about a 30 minute walk from Iya Station. Walk past Iya Shrine and walk along the road until you come to a railway crossing. Go over the crossing and walk up the hill.