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|Miscellaneous Questions 7 - To Misc or not to Misc|
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It's not really about being from a pantheon other than the Yamato one; that'd make Hecatia a native god as well, for instance. Rather, the term just refers to any god that is worshipped in a single area, different from gods that are more broadly worshipped (like Amaterasu or Tsukuyomi).
As Akyuu says in SoPM, Suwako's profile:
--- Quote from: Akyuu ---Native gods are gods that are only worshiped in a limited region. When they are separated from their land, they lose their faith, but within their area, it's not uncommon for them to have more power than wide-ranging (and perhaps even the highest level of) gods.
--- End quote ---
Also, to simplify things, I think it's easier to define the lunarian gods as being the big important gods from Shinto myth, while the Earth gods are the Myriad Gods and the divine spirits that receive some sort of worship.
--- Quote from: Electroll on August 22, 2017, 11:48:19 AM ---After reading CoLA Chapter 15 and 25, can I safely say that Junko is a goddess too since she's a divine spirit. If divine spirits are indeed god/goddess, didn't the protagonists beat up a truck tons of gods during TD?
--- End quote ---
I think this is still more of an issue of conflating all kinds of "gods" as some sort of equally relevant things when they aren't. There's not much of a point in calling Junko a god as though she's the same thing as a god that's revered. She's a divine spirit because whatever her original existence was has been completely removed from how she is represented, she is the pure "essence" or kami nature of her own story.
--- Quote from: Electroll on August 22, 2017, 11:48:19 AM ---So, what is the reason for Okina for teleporting the protagonists away or leaving through her own door if she had the upper hand? And how come the protagonists didnt realise that they are the one running away?
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--- Quote from: Purji Costavis on August 22, 2017, 10:51:44 PM ---While we're on the subject, I have a question. Is it officially known where Kanako falls into all of this? She isn't a native god, certainly, but does this imply that she fits in among the Lunarian deities? Or is she somewhere in between? I've assumed it was one of the latter two, but I am curious if there is anything other than fanon on the topic.
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Others have posted enough to cover it, but the two CoLA chapters I posted are also relevant to her because similarly to Junko, her original identity has been "lost". It's clear that Kanako is generally intended to be an adaptation of the god Takeminakata, but deeper than that, divine spirits are they way they are because they were existing entities (typically humans or groups of humans) but have become detached and twisted from their original existence due to being worshiped (in Kanako's case) or otherwise becoming legend (like Junko).
Understanding that there's a difference between the myriad gods and divine spirits worshiped as gods, the natural question that follows is why Kanako is a divine spirit while Suwako is a myriad god. This is what leads into the discussion of the nature of those two myths; the old native Suwa god was Moreya, who did not have some sort of clear historical origin (i.e. just kind of made up by locals because reasons); meanwhile the god Suwa-Myojin worshiped in Suwa and said to have defeated Moreya is now identified as Takeminakata. "Suwa-Myojin" has a couple additional stories of origin as its own thing depending on region and time period, and Takeminakata is full of chunky historical conflation, being intrinsically tied to the Yamato rule, which was of course political and very human.
Also included in this is the fact that in the Suwa region itself, the god "Takeminakata" was basically never historically worshiped as such, and instead it's the Mishaguji that were commonly the target of worship and active role in rituals. This is alluded to by ZUN by having Kanako being "unable to control" the Mishaguji, which were the main cultural targets of reverence and fear at the time, and having Suwako be the one to control the Mishaguji while Kanako takes the face of leading the region. This is kind of how Takeminakata is seen today, being the "official" god but getting to that point by being slapped on and conflated with other myths to get there. In fact, this is arguably the justification for Kanako existing at all, because similarly to Miko, it's possible that scholarly criticism of Takeminakata's legitimacy is why ZUN chose to "move" them into Gensokyo.
Just to add more texture to the "god" thing, tsukumogami like Kogasa are also described as kami. That's the meaning of the word "gami" at the end. This also applies to to shikigami (Ran and Chen) and shinigami (Komachi). None of these spirits would be considered "gods" in the Western sense, but kami is a much broader term than that.
By the way, what even IS the term for gods born purely of faith (as opposed to having a divine spirit as a basis)? Or is there not one, and that's more a footnote of Suwako's rather than a whole category of god?
Speaking of gods, is Hecatia even the same category of "god" as Kanako, Suwako, or even the Lunarians? She seems like simply a powerful...whatever she is, and her "Goddess" is just a title.
Although given how gods work in Touhou, I guess she can be both.
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