The term is Hōnō 奉納, which means votive offering (donation).
It is typically written on the purification font (stone water basin) and on the offering box. (piles of salt), usually near the entrance, so people who enter the home are purified.
First the left and then the right hand is rinsed with water at the purification font, then the mouth is rinsed with water from the left hand.
Sometimes, in the shrine compound, there will be a fire burning, and people will waft the smoke over their heads (reportedly to catch the blessings of the deity or to burn away impurities).
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The key to appreciating Shintō shrines (and Buddhist temples for that matter) is to know a little bit about Shintō, its traditions, and its deities.
In the Kojiki 古事記 (712 AD), Japan’s oldest extant document, the first land mass (Onogoro Shima or Onokoro Shima 磤馭慮島, or “self-congealing island”) was formed when the creation gods stirred the primordial oceans, causing salt to separate from the brine.
Two Japanese characters are often written on the stone wash basin and elsewhere at the shrine.If your goal is to see statuary, please visit Buddhist temples.Shrines have more things to do -- like having your fortune told and reading the prayers / wishes of visitors -- but statuary is not their forte.Shintō deities are generally called KAMI 神 or SHIN 神.But they are also known by many other names to distinguish them from their Buddhist counterparts. deity, worshippers and casual visitors are asked to purify themselves (Harai 祓い) of impurity.
Two Japanese characters are often written on the stone wash basin and elsewhere at the shrine.If your goal is to see statuary, please visit Buddhist temples.Shrines have more things to do -- like having your fortune told and reading the prayers / wishes of visitors -- but statuary is not their forte.Shintō deities are generally called KAMI 神 or SHIN 神.But they are also known by many other names to distinguish them from their Buddhist counterparts. deity, worshippers and casual visitors are asked to purify themselves (Harai 祓い) of impurity.Some Japanese still practice the old tradition of sprinkling water at the gate of their home in the morning and evening to purify the family environs.