The Kasha (火車, kasha) is a demon with a feline form who would swoop down in a sudden gale, which would grow in intensity until it whisked away the casket of the deceased to carry them off to Hell or devour them. This happened during the funeral before cremation and caused much anger and mortification among those at the funeral, for legend stated that the person being carried away had committed a large number of sins during their life.
The legend of the Kasha was not limited to funerals, however. Some stories tell of seemingly ordinary days where an elderly woman who is especially hated by everyone announces that she is going to an outside lavatory and upon stepping outside would be carried away by a huge black cloud into the sky. But this cloud is also at times referred to as Mouryou, another beast from Japanese folklore. It seems that the "mouryou" and "kasha" were thought of as the same class of demon.
Originally the Kasha would appear from time in Buddhism texts as "Ingakiyou".
Characters under this Bestiary
- Wikipedia entry for Kasha