【research】Walking in the Village of “Hidden Christians”|隠れキリシタンの里を歩く

The eastern part of Minoh City, where my parents live, belongs to an area called “Hokusetsu/Toyono,” or “Tibet in Osaka,” where the temperature is really 2 degrees lower than in Osaka City in the winter. Furthermore, it borders Nose Town in Toyono-gun and the northern part of Ibaraki City to the north, and you can quickly enter deep mountainous nature. Because of this, the area has long had deep ties with Shugendo (Minoh Falls, etc.) and esoteric Buddhism (Katsuo-ji Temple, etc.), and many mysterious legends remain in the area. It is also somewhat understandable that the Sendaiji district of Ibaraki City, which is located in a slightly secluded area, is the home of “hidden Christians” who have maintained their faith for a long time. (Incidentally, Takayama Ukon, a famous Christian feudal lord and lord of Takatsuki Castle, was born in Takayama, Nose Town, Toyono-gun.)


During the family trip back to Japan, there was an important event where I actually waded through this neighborhood on foot. In fact, for the past year or so, I have been engaged in a project to “rediscover the influence of Portuguese culture on Japan during the Warring States period” as part of my work with Professor Kawamori at Keio SFC to study issues on the remote islands of the Shiwaku Islands (Kagawa Territory in the Seto Inland Sea). Especially, we are interested in reexamining the influence of Jesuits and its interaction with Buddhism not only in Kyushu, but also in the islands of the Seto Inland Sea and Shikoku. For that reason, I was eager to visit this “hidden Christian” village. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to my childhood friend M-kun, who spent 4 hours walking with me along the 15-km mountain path!

今回の家族での帰省において、この界隈を実際に徒歩で渉猟するという大事なイベントがありました。実はこの1年ほど、慶應義塾SFCの川森特任教授らと行っている塩飽諸島(瀬戸内海の香川領)の離島課題を考える活動の中で、「ポルトガル文化の戦国時代日本への影響を再発見する」ことに2人ではまっており、当然のように隠れキリシタンについても、九州だけではなく、瀬戸内海の島々や四国においてもその影響を改めて検証する作業をしています。そういう意味でも、ぜひ訪ねてみたい場所だったのです。15kmの山道を4時間かけて一緒に歩いてくれた、話し相手の幼馴染M君に、多謝!(参考: 茨木市立キリシタン遺物史料館

Leave Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

5 × 4 =