Itsukushima Shrine is a Shinto shrine on the island of Itsukushima (popularly known as Miyajima).
It is in the city of Hatsukaichi in Hiroshima Prefecture in Japan.
The shrine is dedicated to the three daughters of Susano-o no Mikoto, Shinto deity of seas and storms and brother of the great sun deity.
Because the island itself has been considered sacred, in order to maintain its purity commoners were not allowed to set foot on Miyajima through much of its history.
In order to allow pilgrims to approach, the shrine was built like a pier over the water, so that it appeared to float, separate from the land,
and therefore existed in a liminal state between the sacred and the profane.
The shrine's signature red entrance gate, or torii, was built over the water for much the same reason.
Commoners had to steer their boats through the torii before approaching the shrine.
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