Raijin is a god of lightning, thunder and storms in the Shinto religion and in Japanese mythology. His name is derived from the Japanese words rai (雷, meaning ‘thunder’) and shin (神, ‘god’ or ‘kami’). He is typically depicted as a demon-looking spirit beating drums to create thunder, usually with the symbol tomoe drawn on the drums. He is also known by the following names:
Yakusa no ikazuchi nokami: Yakusa (八, eight) and ikazuchi (雷, thunder) and kami (神, spirit or deity)
Kaminari-sama: kaminari (雷, kaminari, thunder) and -sama (様, a Japanese honorific meaning “master”)
Raiden-sama: rai (雷, thunder), den (電, lightning), and -sama (様, master).
Narukami: naru (鳴, thundering/rolling) and kami (神, spirit or deity)
According to Kojiki, eight kinds Raijin(Yakusa no ikazuchi no kami) was born from Izanami. The “eight kinds of thunder kami” that festered inside Izanami’s corpse as seen by her consort Izanagi in the underworld of Yomi. Suffering mortal injury from giving birth to the fire kami Kagutsuchi, Izanami died and went to the underworld, where she was followed by Izanagi. Disobeying Izanami’s warning not to look upon her, Izanagi lit a torch and saw her rotting body swollen and covered with maggots, and inhabited by the “eight thunder kami.”
Photo, from left to right: Raijin and Fujin.