shinzan no matsuri ni oriru kami no sisha
From Mount Shinzan
descend messengers of god
into a festival
The Namahage Sedo Festival is held on the grounds of the Shinzan Shrine at the foot of Mount Shinzan on the second Friday, Saturday and Sunday of February every year, when the “Devil Festival” on December 31 is re-enacted for the public there.
Namahage join the festival as messengers of god in the following way.
First of all, there is a ceremony in which young men are exorcized and changed into messengers of god with devil masks handed by Shinto priest（神官）, entering Mount Shinzan as Namahage.
Next, those Namahage come down to the grounds of the Shinzan Shrine to take part in the festival.
By Hidenori Hiruta