Massaging the temples (July 2002)index | prev | next

In addition to the museums, I was keen to see the many Buddhist and Shinto temples around the city. This little number sits aside Shinobizu pond.

The Kiyomizu-do Kannon temple is on the grounds near the Tokyo National Museum and in spite of seeming a very nice place, didn't appear to get much traffic.

I was tempted to run up and ring the bell, but the stern looks from the monks inside quickly put that idea out of my head.

The trip to Kyoto was where the serious action took place. This is the secondary gate into the grounds of the Hongwanji Temple.

The main gate is no slouch either.

The halls of the temple proper, not to be out done by the gates, are accordingly gigantic.

I bet you can fit a lot of monks in this room.

Meanwhile, back in Tokyo, I finally made it to Asakusa and the Sensoji temple, which turned out to be a bustling center of activity.

Here I saw my first proper five story pagoda.

This was clearly where your average city dweller went to take care of religious business. There were people drinking from some sort of holy fountain, writing notes and hanging them from the eaves, standing in prayer in the main hall, and generally getting on with the myriad ceremonies that seemed to be required of your modern Japanese citizen.

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