In Japanese villages cattle were availed to cultivate wet fields before the late 1960s. So every farmer was said to not be able to manage his farming without his cows. Lots of cows were kept particularly in Chugoku mountain areas,where farmers could utilize pastures to keep their cows. We can observe many kinds of the customs and worship for the guardian spirits of cattle in this region,because the cows were so necessary for the farmers and they brought up their cows so affectionately.
The guardian spirits are divided to three types. The first is the native spirits such as Kouzin deity or Dainichi bodhisattva,which have been believed as the guardian for the cattle in particular although they were primarly the deities of general character. The seconnd is the functional spirits which have been believed to guard the cattle and we can note Daisen mountain deity,Nakayama shrine,or Nawakuri shrine for it. The third is the one which has been worshipped in the limited bound of regions. I confirm that most of these guardian spirits have been a㏄epted as prevalent deities and they have spreaded along Chugoku mountain areas.