詳細

中之又神楽(なかのまたかぐら) Nakanomata Kagura

15分版 15min

2時間版 2hrs

【中之又神楽】
  中之又神楽が継承されている中之又地区は、宮崎県中央部に帯状の地形をなす木城町(きじょうちょう)の北部山間部に位置する集落である。町村をまたぎこの一帯を古くは「米良山(めらやま)」と称した。
  中之又ではそれぞれの集落の鹿倉社(かくらしゃ)に、山と狩猟(しゅりょう)の神である鹿倉様(かくらさま)をお祀りしている。鹿倉様の神面(しんめん)は六つの集落の社家(しゃけ)により集落の守り神として受け継がれており、例大祭にて一堂に会する。
  三十三番の神楽が奉納される中之又鎮守神社(なかのまたちんじゅじんじゃ)は、永正(えいしょう)元年(1504)の創建と伝わる。山岳の社(やしろ)らしく肥後(ひご)・豊後(ぶんご)・日向(ひゅうが)にまたがる祖母山(そぼさん)より勧請(かんじょう)したと伝わる姥嶽大明神(うばだけだいみょうじん)のほか、神武天皇(じんむてんのう)、宇佐八幡(うさはちまん)、春日稲荷大明神(かすがいなりだいみょうじん)の四柱(よはしら)を祀る集落の総社である。社家と集落で暮らす氏子を中心に、閉校した中之又小学校を利用した山村留学にて神楽を修得した子どもたちが、成長した現在でも祭りの日には戻り、中之又神楽を奉納している。
  米良山の神楽の特徴ともいえる祭神(さいじん)迎え、先祓いの「地舞(じまい)」が番付名においても明確に位置づけられており、神々が守護されている。「鹿倉舞(かくらまい)」「獅子舞(ししまい)」「獅子とり荒神(ししとりこうじん)」などの演目や、神楽の締めくくりに境内(けいだい)のシシバ様に(しめ)のツト部分( 幣(しめび)24 本を挿す椎柴(しいしば)の苞(つと))を納め行う清めの儀など、随所に狩猟儀礼(しゅりょうぎれい)が反映されている。
  集落には神楽セリ歌の名手がおり、舞に合わせ観客を巻き込み場を盛り上げる。令和3年(2021)現在、神楽保存会を中心とした約60名で、夜を徹しての祭りが行われており、公演等にも参加し神楽の保存継承につとめている。

【Nakanomata Kagura】
  The Nakanomata region, where Nakanomata Kagura has been passed down through the generations, is a community in the mountainous area in the north of the town of Kijo. This whole area, spanning several towns and villages, was referred to in ancient times as Merayama.
  In Merayama, each community has its own Kakura-sha shrine, where Kakura-sama, the god of mountains and hunting, is venerated. The mask of Kakura-sama is passed down within the families of the shrine priests in each of the six local communities as a protective deity of the area, and everyone gathers to see it at the annual shrine festivals.
  It is believed that Nakanomata-jinja, where the repertoire of 33 kagura dances is performed, was founded in 1504. The shrine is something of a sōsha, or blanket shrine, with four main deities: besides Ubatake Daimyōjin, said to have been called over from Mt. Sobo, the region that stretches over the areas of Higo, Bungo and Hyuga, by prayers, similar to other Shinto shrines in the mountains, the shrine also venerates Emperor Jimmu, Usa Hachiman and Kasuga Inari Daimyōjin. Nakanomata Kagura is mainly performed by the families of the local priests. The disused Nakanomata Elementary School building is also used to give children a chance to experience life in a rural mountain community – many of the children that learn kagura there return to Nakanomata after they grow up on festival days to perform the dances.
  One characteristic of this local style of kagura from Merayama is that the dance Jimai is performed at the head of the repertoire to purify the area, welcome the deities, and show that the people are under their protection. The strong influence of hunting rituals can be seen throughout the style, for example in the inclusion of dances with names like Kakura mai (Kakura dance), Shishi mai (Lion dance), and Shishitori Kōjin (Lion-hunting Kōjin), and the purification ritual performed to conclude the kagura, in which the tsuto – the decoration hung from the shime (sacred pillar) made of 24 paper talismans – is adorned with shīshiba (chinquapin branches) and placed in shishiba-sama (the sacred grove in the shrine precincts).
  There is a kagura vocal virtuoso in the community, who also gets the spectators involved with the dancing and enlivens the whole spectacle. As of 2021, there are around 60 people, mostly with the local kagura preservation society, who work hard to preserve this historic style of kagura by performing it through the night during festivals and staging public performances.