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Skull Mushroom Halloween Decorations
A skull mushroom is one of the most terrifying Halloween decorations. This Facebook image reminded me of my Skull-a-Day post in 2009. It was definitely creepy. But the fun part of the festival was the pumpkins. These pumpkins were also decorated with skulls and pumpkin-themed decorations. The pumpkins were especially popular this year, with Halloween decorations featuring pumpkins, skulls, and gourds.
Only Mount Osore in Aomori Prefecture, Japan is where the sacred skull mushroom can be found. Its cap is approximately 12.5 inches in length and looks similar to a human skull. There are two varieties of skull mushrooms, the Devil Skull Mushroom and the Princess Skull Mushroom. Traditionally, these mushrooms have been used by female shamans for both hallucinogenic medicinal purposes and spiritual rituals.
Itako Taisai festival
On July 20, a large Buddhist temple on Honshu will host an Itako Taisai Festival that will feature the skull mushroom. Many locals believe it is paranormal and use the mushroom to contact spirit. The skull mushroom has a cap that resembles a human skull and has been used for centuries by shamans for spiritual rituals and hallucinogenic medicinal uses. The most recent appearance of the mushroom was during the 2011 Tohoku earthquake. This was the worst natural disaster in Japanese history.
The festival is organized and led by Mount Osore’s temple presiding over itako (traditional female Shamans) who perform austere rituals. These shamans claim to summon the souls of the dead and deliver messages in their voice. The festival takes place over five days in July. You can also enjoy walks and a hot-spring resort. While the festival features a skull mushroom, you can also visit the temple itself.
Itako Taisai mushrooms
Itako, which means “mediums”, refers to blind elderly women. Today’s itako defy stereotypes. They are often active in society and have been known to channel the spirits of their departed loved ones. They are able to achieve a trance-state by eating a type of mushroom called Devil Skull Mushroom. Many people are able to experience these eerie, sometimes magical powers.
Japan’s early Jomon period saw the development of mushroom culture. This was between 14000 and 300 CE. Even Japanese ceramics are adorned with mushrooms. This indicates that mushrooms play a significant role in Japanese culture. Mushrooms are full of nutrients and have many health benefits, including the ability to fight breast cancer tissue, reduce the risk of depression and slow the aging process. To find out more about mushroom health benefits, visit the website below.
Maitake, also known as hen-of the-woods, can be described as an edible mushroom that has a ruffled appearance. They are native to Asia and Europe and are widely grown using sawdust cultivation. Their name means “dance,” which is an apt description of the fungus’ flavor and aroma. Maitake mushrooms are a common mushroom in Asian and North American kitchens. They have many health benefits. Not only do they taste great, but they are also low in calories and contain lots of fiber and protein.
Another type of itako is the king trumpet mushroom. Although it is cultivated in Japan, the population has decreased significantly due to environmental change. Large specimens can fetch very high prices due to their size. Sadly, environmental changes have seriously affected their population and its status as a food source. Its future as a whole is at stake, and efforts are underway to preserve it.
Itako Taisai pumpkins
On July 20, the Itako Taisai festival is held in the Japanese mountains. In Japan, seasoned itako use the mushrooms to perform a special ritual known as kuchiyose. The ritual is said to bring messages from the dead to those who participate. This is not as common in the West. It is more common in Japan, where mushrooms are only found in Aomori Prefecture.