Amateras-Ohmikami, which means "the goddess who shines in the heavens," is the greatest Japanese god. She represents the sun, shining her daylight on the earth.
Her brother, the god Susanoh , was always terribly mean to her. One day he threw horse's hide into her temple. The temple maidens were sewing and a sharp sewing tool accidentally stabbed to death one of the maidens.
Angry, Amateras hid herself behind the big rock and the entire world lost went dark.
So the other gods made a plan to get her out from the rock. They had a big party in front of the rock, and Amateras was so curious that she asked them what was going on. One of the gods answered, "Another great goddess appeared and we're having a party for her."
When Amateras moved the rock slightly to see outside, one of the gods pulled her out from behind it and the daylight shone on the world again.
Amateras and Demeter
The sharp tool pierced the maiden's genitals and this could mean that Susanoh raped Amateras. In the Greek myth, Poseidon raped his sister, Demeter, when she disguised herself as a horse. BACK
Other suns behind the rock
Some other Asian countries have stories with similar plots. In those stories, a goddess also represents the sun. BACK
JAPANESE MYTH HOMEPAGE