Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Japanese bad hair day demon

Thomas Lynch is publishing a book about fabled creatures from around the world. Julian Callos's contribution is a Kami-kiri:

Kami-kiri are known for sneaking up on people and cutting all their hair off, particularly when they are unknowingly engaged to marry a youkai, spirit or other supernatural creature that is disguised as a human. These hair-cutting attacks are intended to delay or prevent weddings between humans and otherworldly beings, which are typically doomed to failure. There a spell to protect oneself from this that goes:

異国より 悪魔の風の 吹きくるに そこ吹きもどせ 伊勢の神風 (ikokuyori akumanokazeno fukikuruni sokofukimodose isenokamikaze) which means “When devil’s wind comes from a foreign place, may the gods send a counter-wind (from Ise; Ise is a strong Shinto area)"

People write down this spell in the entrance (genkan) and on things worn in the hair (combs, etc.).
*Previously: Japanese wall demon.

*Buy Dream Spectres: Extreme Ukiyo-e: Sex, Blood & the Supernatural at Amazon.