June 30, 2009

The flowers displayed at Matsugaoka Treasure House of Tokei-ji temple

Although Tokei-ji temple is a zen temple as a branch temple of Engaku-ji temple at present, this temple was formerly a nunnery which was famous as a "Kakekomi-tera," i.e. a temple of women's shelter.

Blue Ajisai (hydrangea) flowers in Tokei-ji temple

There is a unique and feminine atmosphere in this temple. Its garden always amuses the visitor with seasonal flowers and plants.

Dr. Daisetsu Teitaro Suzuki who was a prominent author of books and essays on Zen Buddhism spent his late years in this temple and is buried in its graveyard.

The tile roof of a black wall in Tokei-ji temple

The gate to the Cha-shitu (tea house) of Tokei-ji temple

There is a close connection between Sadou (the way of tea: Japanese tea ceremony) and Japanese Zen Buddhism. The aesthetic of Japanese tea ceremony is based on the view of the world and human life of the Zen Buddhism.

The garden seen through the hojyo (priest residence) of Jochi-ji temple

A well with bamboo-cover in the garden of Jyochi-ji temple

The bell tower of Jyochi-ji temple

The garden of Jochi-ji temple

The path to the gate of "Shoto-in" branch-temple at Kencho-ji

The interior of a room in the Hojyo of Kencho-ji temple

Schoolgirls practicing "Zazen" meditation in Kencho-ji temple

The zen garden of Kencho-ji temple

Sacred lotus buds in Kencho-ji temple

A sacred lotus flower in Kencho-ji temple

The Butsu-den (main hall) and Ho-den (lecture hall) of Kencho-ji temple

June 28, 2009

In Engaku-ji Temple

Hime-hiougi-suisen (Montbretia) flowers in the woods. “Hime-hiougi-suisen” means a little wood-fan narcissus.

The moss-covered stone statues of various Kanzeon-Bosatsues in the front garden of the Hojyo.

The Sin-ji-ike of the zen-garden. “Sin-ji-ike” is a pond whose shape is made to represent the Kanji-character of “Kokoro” (spirit or soul.)

Gaku-Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers.

A Nyoirin-Kanzeon-Bosatsu statue in a pose of thinking about salvation for every living being.

June 25, 2009

In Meigetsu-in Temple

Ajisai(hydrangea) flowers.

A Kanoko-Ga (white-spotted moth) and Ajisai flowers.

A circular window of the Hojyo (the main hall of the temple.)
The form of a circle (Enso) symbolizes the spiritual completeness or spiritual enlightenment ("Satori" ) of Zen Buddhism.

A flower container hung on the gate of Houjyou.
These flowers symbolize a present season of nature according to the aesthetic of the Japanese ceremony of tea.

White iris flowers in the garden.

In Engaku-ji temple

"Tsukubai" (a hand-wash basin) at Oubai-in (yellow plum house) of Engaku-ji temple.

A bamboo grove beside Butsu-den (main-hall) of Engaku-ji temple.

The hip-and-gable roof of the Shari-den (a hall for enshrining the relics of Buddha (Shari)) of Engaku-ji is seen inside the gate. This building is a national treasure of Japan.

June 19, 2009

Nyoirin-Kanzeon-Bosatsu (cintaamaNicakra) in Engaku-ji temple

Nyoirin-Kanzeon-Bosatsu is one of the six Kanzeon-Bosatsus. These Kanzeon-Bosatsus are the gods of mercy and salvation that are the metamorphosises of Buddha himself.

This Bosatsu has six hands and holds a Hou-rin (i.e. evil-destroying wheel) and a Nyoui-houjyu (i.e. wish-fulfilling jewel) on two of his hands.