2019年03月25日

'Hokoku-ji' Buddhist temple in Kamakura City, Kanagawa Prefecture, features remarkably beautiful bamboo grove.

IMG_0309.JPG

IMG_0310.JPG

Talking about a bamboo grove, the one in Sagano in Kyoto is widely known, but a beautiful bamboo grove comparable with Sagano's can be found in Kamakura City in the suburbs of Tokyo. About 1 km west of Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, an elegant Buddhist temple named Hokoku-ji Zen Temple stands in a quiet environment. This temple is not as big as 'Enkaku-ji' and 'Kencho-ji' Buddhist temple, both of the are the leading temples in Kamakura, however it was built in 1334 and is one of the oldest temples in this district. The ground of this temple is very well maintained, so that the visitors can enjoy the bamboo grove as shown in the first picture, dray landscape garden and old bell tower in the second picture while walking around the promenade. 'Maccha' powdered tea with Japanese sweet are available at a tea house in the bamboo grove. A little far from Kamakura Station though, this temple is worth visiting for all the people who have no time to visit Kyoto.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki.

HP-banner


posted by masahisa at 20:06 | Kamakura | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2016年12月23日

'Hasedera' Buddhist Temple in Kamakura, although the principal buildings of it were leveled in the Great Kanto Earthquake of 1923, is one of the leading old temples in Kamakura.

IMG_0774.JPG

IMG_0791.JPG

According to the oral tradition, a pair of Buddhist images were carved out of one big trunk of a camphor tree for the sake of Hasedera Buddhist Temple in Nara in 736. One image was for this temple and the other one was washed out to sea. 15 years later, the latter one drifted to the coast of Kamakura and the locals erected Hasedera in Kamakura to enshrine this miracle Buddhist image. This story is untrustworthy though, lots of evidence showing that this temple already existed in the 13th-14th century are found. One piece of those evidence is the inscription of the old temple bell reading that the bell was made in 1264 and the old name of this temple was 'New Hasedera'. The main image of this temple which is said coming all the way from Nara, is difficult to estimate when it was made since too many traces of repair works are found though, it seems to be carved in the 15th century. This temple is built along the hillside, accordingly you can enter from 'Sanmon' gate in the first picture to ascend a flight of the open-air stairs through beautiful gardens up to 'Kannondo' main building as shown in the second picture. The main image of this temple, about 9 meters high, which is one of the largest wooden Buddhist images in Japan, is enshrined in this building.

Licensed tour guide/travel consultant,
Masahisa Takaki.

HP-banner

posted by masahisa at 13:15 | Kamakura | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする

2010年08月09日

The ancient city 'Kamakura', the de facto capital of Japan in the 13th century, is proud of 'Engaku-ji' temple ranked as the second position among the five largest temples in the city.

ennkakisanmon.jpg

enkakushariden.jpg

The 'Engaku-ji' temple was built by the regent 'Hojo' family to mourn for the death in the Mongolian Expedition against Japan so called 'Genko' in the 13th century. This temple features the impartial memorial service for the war dead on both sides, Japan and Mongol. The 'San-mon' temple gate in the picture above and other major buildings were rebuilt in the 17th and 18th century, while the 'Shari-den' reliquary hall in the picture below, a typical 'Zen' style structure supposed to be built in the 15th century, is designated a national treasure. This reserved building is said to house the feretory of the Buddha although it is not usually open to the public. The sutra chanted by training priests sometimes reaches our ears from adjacent seminary for the Buddhist priesthood.

Licensed tour guide/travel assistant,
Masahisa Takaki.

通訳案内士 高木聖久。

HP-banner
posted by masahisa at 10:47 | Kamakura | このブログの読者になる | 更新情報をチェックする