Category Archives: Syllabary

Wosite Fundamentals 4. Awanouta

Awanouta analysis 2 copyAwanouta in box copy








Wosite Syllabary

The chart on the left is the Wosite syllabary of 48 syllables. Ignoring the arrows and colors for now, read it from upper right to lower left, going down column by column. We start with  A  and end with  WO. The columns read:

Wosite syllabary.001


There are two allographs in the syllabary chart: the cosmic  A  and the cosmic  WA, to indicate Cosmos and Earth, respectively. This syllabary contains the processes of creation of the world from Space to solid matter. The chart on the right contains other allographs — A,  HU,  and  HE — which serve a different purpose.


This is the Awanouta, the Song of A and Wa, the song of creation. It is a re-arrangement of the glyphs of the syllabary. The arrows point out the order. The blue arrow indicates the syllables from  A  to  NO. The red arrow continues with  MO  to the end, WA.The blue section was sung by Isanagi (male) and the red by Isanami (female). Again, male before female. Here is Awanouta.

Wosite Awanouta.001


Awanouta is the kototama song of Wosite. It contains all 48 processes of creation from Cosmos to Earth. When we sound it slowly and clearly with intention, we connect with cosmic energies and Universe.



Wosite Fundamentals 2. Wosite Syllabary

Written Wosite is a syllabic script of 48 basic characters plus some special forms to enhance meaning, such as for emphasis, numerals, or clarification. Each character is read as a syllable, consonant first and vowel second. There are only two sounds in each syllable, a single consonant and a single vowel. Of course, for pure vowels, there is no consonant sound at all.


There are five vowels in Wosite. The vowel sounds are  A,  I,  U,  E,  O. They are pronounced as in Hawaiian or in Spanish. Vowels can stand alone or can be combined with a consonant to form a syllable. Each vowel represents a cosmic energy or a process of creation. Although their names seem to be “things” or “elements,” they are really “actions” or “movements.” Universe creates through movement.

There are five basic vowel glyphs, each shown here with its vowel sound, Wosite name, translation of name in quotation marks, and cosmic energy / creative process. 

Wosite Similarity vowels.002

The translated names are given for mnemonic purposes, not as literal meanings; meanings are given succinctly in the last column.

Exercise:  Pronounce the vowels out loud. Imagine the type of process each vowel represents.


There are ten glyphs indicating nine consonants plus no consonant sound (i.e., pure vowel sound). The null consonant is indicated by a dot. Consonant sounds are indicated by glyphs which are superimposed on vowel glyphs to be sounded as syllables. Consonants are always sounded before vowels. There would be five times ten = 50 characters but there are only 48 ordinary syllables in the Wosite syllabary since two are missing.

Wosite Similarity consonants.001

Exercise:  Learn the consonants in the given order by sounding the syllables above.

Wosite Syllables

The result of combining the vowels with the consonants produces syllables. In this special case, the written character for the sound  a  is composed of the utuho glyph and the dot. Thus,


Similarly, to form the syllable  ka, superimpose the utuho glyph and the  k  glyph:


Following this procedure for all but two combinations of vowel and consonant glyphs, we obtain the chart of basic syllable characters below, to be read from right to left and top to bottom. The characters are very regular, following the above rules except for a few irregularities. This chart resembles a mathematical table, an array of five columns and ten rows. The columns represent cosmic creative energies and the rows symbolize transformative processes. Herein lies the cosmogony of the Wosite people.

Wosite Syllabary (Matsumoto)

Wosite Syllabary Chart

(Matsumoto 1999)

Reading down the first column, we have:

A   KA   HA   NA   MA   TA   RA   SA   YA   WA

This sequence symbolizes creation of the world from Cosmos A to Earth WA. (Notice that WA is not written with a circle.) With this chart, you will be able to read Wosite literature except for special symbols (allographs such as the cosmic  A).

The second column reads:

I   KI   HI   NI   MI   TI   RI   SI   YI

We note that current Nihongo pronounces  chi  for  ti and  shi  for  si.  These sounds changed after the introduction of the Chinese language. Similarly,  tsu  for  ti.

Third column:

U   KU   HU   NU   MU   TU   RU   SU   YU   WU

We notice that  ru  and  wu  have modified shapes. For the  E  column:

E   KE   HE   NE   ME   TE   RE   SE   YE

For the  O  column:

O   KO   HO   NO   MO   TO   RO   SO   YO   WO

Frequently,  wo  is written with a dot in the center. This completes the entries in the syllabary.

Exercise:  Write the Wosite syllables in the form of the syllabary chart. Compare your chart with Matsumoto’s.


The rule in Wosite is that consonant goes before vowel to form a syllable. This is very important because Wosite is a kototama language. This is a rule of kototama, the power of sound, the Spirit in speech. 

Kototama refers to vowels as “mother sounds” and consonants as “father sounds.” A prominent myth of Isanagi (“father”) and Isanami (“mother”) reminds us that “father goes before mother.” As a kototama language, Wosite is powerful, as evidenced by tales in Hotsuma Tsutae. 

Another rule of kototama is the avoidance of voiced consonants (called dakuon) which darken energy and make it more negative. Thus, even the name kototama is preferred over the modern version, kotodama. Dakuon rarely appears in Wosite literature except when necessary.


Basics of Wosite

Ametuti Passage H.TWosite Literature

There are three extant documents written in Wosite script. They are called the Hotsuma Tsutae, the Futomani, and the Misakafumi. Here we show an excerpt from the Hotsuma Tsutae, lines 2576-2583. Wosite literature is read from top to bottom and right to left, the same as in traditional Nihongo. The Wosite documents have been composed and written as poetry with a five-seven rhythm, said to be the rhythm of earth and cosmos.

Each character is read as a syllable, consonant first and vowel second. There are only two sounds, a consonant and a vowel in each syllable. For pure vowels, of course, there is no consonant at all. There are 48 such syllables.

We will show how the syllables are written, starting with their vowel sounds. We will find that the Wosite written language is full of meaning, especially having to do with the energies of creation of Universe. As for spoken Wosite, it may be considered kototama, that is, spoken Wosite carries the power of sound energy. Therefore, one speaks in a responsible manner.


There are five vowels.  The vowels are  a,  i,  u,  e,  o.  They are always given in this order because the order represents cosmological process.

Utsuho tai    A           Utuho     “space”          Originating energy/process

Kase tai     I            Kase          “wind”        Vibrating energy/process

Ho tai     U            Ho             “fire”           Burning energy/process

Mitu tai       E             Mitu         “water”       Flowing energy/process

Hani tai       O            Hani         “earth”        Solidifying energy/process

Vowel sounds are similar to Hawaiian and Spanish. There are no diphthongs.

Each vowel represents a cosmic energy or process. Although their names seem to be “things” or “elements,” they are really “actions” or “movements.” Universe creates through movement.

Exercise: Pronounce the vowels out loud. Imagine the type of process each vowel represents.


There are ten consonants if we count the null sound as a consonant. The consonant order is important for cosmological reasons.

The first five consonant glyphs read (top to bottom):

                                              –         K          H        N        M                                                                     Ten consonants

                                              T          R          S        Y        W

Ten consonants copy

In Nihongo, since there are no consonants per se, one would say, “a  ka  ha  na  ma  ta  ra  sa  ya  wa.”

Exercise:  Learn the order of the ten consonants, reciting “a  ka  ha  na  ma  ta  ra  sa  ya  wa.”


Awanouta. Part 2. Awanouta and Wosite Syllabary


Awanouta analysis 2We show how the ideograms/syllables of the Awanouta (in the box above) were derived from the Wosite syllabary. This figure is by S. Sakata.

Wosite Syllabary

Shown in the box is a chart of the Wosite syllabary. It begins with the blue ideogram for  a. Follow the blue arrow to the left for the upper half of the song which Isanagi sings. The red ideogram for  mo  begins Isanami’s lower half. Follow the red arrows to the right to the end of the song at  wa.

You can see why Isanagi’s half is called “upper” and Isanami’s is called “lower”. When the ideograms are written and sung in the given order in 5 – 7 rhythm, the Awanouta of Part 1 is produced.

Verse 402 Hutakami ha

The verse reads:

huta kami ha     arata ni mekuri

wo ha hitari     me ha miki mekuri

ahi utahu     ame no awa uta


hutakami /  two kami.  aratani / newly.  mekuri / to revolve.  hitari / left.  miki / right.  ahi (ai) / together.


The two kami     newly went around

male to the left     female to the right

sang together     song of Cosmos.

This is the famous story of how Isanagi goes around to the left and Isanami to the right. Isanagi sings first and Isanami sings second. That is the proper way. The reason is: Isanagi’s song comes from the upper five lines of the syllabary, minus the last syllable, mo. Isanami starts with mo and goes through the rest of the chart to the end, wa. His lines are regular: 5, 5, 5, 5, 5-1. Hers are irregular: 1+5, 4, 5, 4, 5 and begins with mo. Thus it can be said that it was not proper for her to sing first, as the well-known legend relates. When they realized this, then he sang first and all was well.

The singing and movements of Isanami and Isanagi may be considered to be a ceremony for giving birth to a good country. This insight of theirs came from much praying with their whole hearts.


2. Wosite Syllabary

Woshite/Wosite.   Woshite is the modern pronunciation of the language originally sounded as Wo-si-te or Wosite. Over the course of time, the shi sound came to replace the si sound. In general communication, we may prefer to say Woshite. However, when we are analyzing the writing, we will say and write Wosite.

Wosite is a syllabic language. Vowels and syllables form words. In general, syllables begin with a consonant.

The Wosite syllabary of 48 ideograms is shown in tabular form above, five rows and ten columns, with two “missing” entries. If we were to read across the  a  row, we would say, “a, ka, ha, na, ma, ta, ra, sa, ya, wa.”  The i row would read, “i, ki, hi, etc.”

In Wosite analysis, we will study the forms of the ideograms and their meanings. In this article, we present the basics of Wosite. Detailed explanations will follow.

Why study Wosite? Wosite is a language and writing system which was designed long ago in a systematic manner. Through  analysis, we learn not only how meanings are contained in language and in writing, both past and present. We learn that Wosite reveals the origin of the universe by powerful, creative, unseen energies. We get an inkling of how energy moves and actualizes things and even life itself.

Figures in this post. The figures shown here are from the book in Japanese, Yomigaeru Nihongo, Vol. I, by S. Aoki and N. Hiraoka, 2009, with their kind permission.

Vowels.   There are five vowels in Wosite: a, i, u, e, o. Shown in Fig. 2-14 are the elementary glyphs for vowels. Vowels are pronounced as in Spanish, Italian, or Hawaiian.


Each vowel sound has a unique creative energy from universe: Space-, Wind-, Fire-, Water-, and Soil-energy.  Vowels represent primary transformations of state. As ideograms, they serve as frames for consonant modifiers. A vowel not preceded by a consonant is indicated by a dot in the ideogram.

Consonants.   There is a symbol (the dot) indicating a pure vowel, plus there are nine glyphs representing nine consonant sounds. These are shown in Fig. 2-15.


The consonant glyphs represent phase changes of state, and serve as more detailed expressions of process.

Ideograms and syllables.  Fig. 2-16 shows how the syllable ideograms are formed from the fifteen basic elements just presented. We see immediately that there are exceptions in the last  column for  w. There are two missing entries. The ideogram in the w  column, u  row, is correctly pronounced “wu”, although in the present age it is pronounced “n”. Also, in the  r   column, the ideogram for the syllable  ru  is written differently than expected. This is how the chart of Fig. 2-13 at the beginning of this article was formed.Yoshinosuke Matsumoto through decades of study determined the Wosite syllabary. Mitsuru Ikeda and researchers of the Japan Woshite Institute developed an understanding of the meanings of the ideograms. If you can read Japanese, we suggest that you read the references given in Post 1.1.

Wosite Matrix 2