The purpose of the Shugenja is order to save the masses by “Genriki”. “Genriki” is a supernatural power, and is thought to be acquired as a result of severe training in the steep mountain. Their purpose is to use that power for respond to people’s religious needs.
They have “Shyakujo” (like a cane) and conch/trumpet shell (signaling tool) and “Kyuu” (backpack with Buddhist gear) and entered the mountains to practice for days. They have knowledge to correct sickness and injuries. Also, they can do rituals of rain.
- The ultimate athlete?
- The mountain the Shugenja train is steep mountains that are the subject of mountain faith. They advance on a road without roads, cross over valleys and rivers, and cross the mountain with various training.
They enter the mountain with only the minimum drinking water and food necessary for survival. And they sleep in a simple old hall where they can prevent rain in the mountains. By integrating with nature, they are trying to gain the spiritual power of the mountain.
- Ninja? Spy?
- During the Sengoku period, the Shugenja were permitted to travel in Japan for training or pilgrimage reasons. Sengoku Daimyo who wore this might have used them for intelligence activities. Some of them may have played the role of a ninja.
Ninja uses techniques in movies or animation. At that time, they will make a sign by hand and cast a spell. It is interesting to imagine that the magical powers of the Shugenja may be depicted.
- Doctor? Pharmacy?
- We can not survive in nature unless we have coping with sickness or injury, knowledge of medicinal herbs or medicinal herbs, etc. The Shugenja would have these knowledge. When they came to the village, they would have been appreciated by treating people’s illnesses and injuries. The villagers would have appreciated them.