Gokuraku-ji: Gokuraku-ji (極楽寺), is the second Temple of the 88 Sacred Places of Shikoku Prefecture (四国八十八ヶ所巡り), in Japan. Founded by Gyōki in 815 and visited by Kōbō Daishi when he was 42 years of age. The garden on your left, as you walk towards the main hall, is a paradise garden called Unkai no Jōdo (雲海の浄土). Chōsokabe Motochika (長宗我部元親) and […]Read more ›
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Ryōzen-ji (霊山寺): Ryōzen-ji (霊山寺) is the starting point of the Sacred 88 Shikoku Pilgrimage Sites (四国八十八ヶ所巡り) in Tokushima, Japan. This temple is grouped with the “Hosshin no Dōjō” (発心 の 道場) or “Dōjō to Awaken Your Faith” comprising of temples 1 to 23. It has a store where you can buy the necessary items to start the Shikoku Pilgrimage. Yūben Shinnen […]Read more ›
Shikoku Pilgrimage: In the beginning of July I was in Shikoku, a little more than a two hour drive from Kyoto. We stayed in a resort hotel in the Naruto area. Since being so close to the first temple of the Shikoku Pilgrim (四国遍路) starting point, I took a look. I’ve been intrigued by this pilgrimage for some time and […]Read more ›
History of Tōji Temple: Tōji Temple (東寺) in the south-eastern part of Kyoto is a large complex with a history dating back more than a 1000 years ago. In the year 794 Emperor Kanmu moved the capital from Heijō-kyō (平城京-Nara) to Heian-kyō (平安京-Kyoto). He wanted to have two guardian temples to protect the new capital, one in the East and […]Read more ›