December 28, 2009
I saw the bright autumnal leaves sparkling over the path leading to the small Buddha hall of this temple.
The clear rays of sunshine falling down through the interlocking branches of trees brought a breathtaking moment of beauty to the stillness of this modest temple.
December 27, 2009
December 18, 2009
December 17, 2009
A Shaka-nyorai statue is serenely sitting in the eternal silence of enlightenment. The ground and rock around this statue are beautifully covered over with the vivid yellow fallen leaves of ginkgo trees.
In the small hollow of the mossed rock behind this Buddha statue, the gravestone of Soyen Shaku (1859-1919) is secretly enshrined.
Soyen Shaku was one of the most excellent zen masters of Rinzai school and the chief administrator of the Kencho-ji sect at that time. He was the first zen teacher to introduce Zen Buddhism into the United States.
D.T.Suzuki, who is also buried in the graveyard of Tokei-ji, is one of the prominent disciples of this great mentor of zen.
The bell tower and the "Byakusin" (Juniper) trees were exposed to the dazzling sunlight of the late afternoon.
A Byakusin tree is symbolic of the zen discipline and is found in every zen garden of Kamakura. This evergreen tree is believed to keep its greenness without withering and grow persistently without stopping.
December 9, 2009
On a cloudy afternoon I visited Tokei-ji temple to see the long-awaited flamboyant colors of autumnal leaves.
The cloudy sky cast a pale sunlight on the transitory colorful leaves and added a feeling of subtle melancholy to the enchanting garden of early winter.
The squirming branches of the aged "Ume" tree made me sense the gentle and firm energy of this tree.
The Ume trees in this garden are quietly awaiting the coming of next spring, for blooming vigorously and rapturously again in the season of growth.
December 8, 2009
November 30, 2009
November 17, 2009
I sensed a strong and calm life force when I saw the twisted sturdy roots of the large tree and the partly yellowed leaves of Yatsude.
"Yatsude" means "a shrub having eight-fingered leaves" and the shapes of its leaves remind me of the small hands of lively children.