Thursday, April 21, 2016

Temple 81 - Shiramine-ji

On my day off last week, I walked to Shiramine-ji and back home again - 15 miles! This is one of the Shikoku 88 Temples and is at the top of Shiramine yama (mountain).  Kurkai built this temple and founded the Shingon Sect. Emperor Sutoku was cremated in this temple. 


This is not my religion so I don't understand the reason and ritual of this pilgrimage, but I am fascinated by it.  The pilgrims wear white shirts and sometimes white pants, and a cone straw hat.  They carry a white bag with their pilgrim book in it and a wooden stick with a bell. I like the smell of the incense burning at the temples. It seems to give a calm feeling.


Getting here was a lot of uphill, a lot of steps.  Right away I noticed this temple had a lot of little cat statues everywhere. I have no idea what that's about. The temple ground covered a large area with many buildings set into the side of the mountain. Did I mention there were a lot of steps?



















Next, Temple 82!

2 comments:

  1. I visited the Shiramine temple last week, too - in (well near) TOKYO!
    At one of the major Shingon sect's temples, Kawasaki Daishi, there is an area with 88 stone pillars, each representing one of the 88 temples of Shikoku. So instead of walking all the way around Shikoku to visit the temples, you can complete your pilgrimage in 10 minutes. Talk about Compact Living!
    Beautiful photos, and the cherry blossom petals are so elegant on the ground.

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  2. Interesting photos Pamela, thanks for sharing.

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