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Higashi-Honganji Temple
Kyoto

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Higashi-Honganji Temple | Kinkankuji (Golden Pavillion) | Ryoanji Temple and Rock Garden | Kiyomizu Temple | Himeiji

Higashi-honganji

This temple is said to be the largest wooden structure in Japan.

The beams they used to construct the temple were so heavy that conventional ropes broke in the transportation of the beams. Worshipers donated their hair and 53 human hair ropes were woven that measured 40 cm in diameter with the longest at the length of 20 meters. Apparently they did the job. They are on display in the hall, if you're curious. We came late in the day and were kicked out before we had a chance to view them.


fountain

Each temple has a fountain where you cleanse your mouth and hands before offering your prayers to the god(s). Most of the fountains I have seen are simple wooden spouts. This, as well as one much like it at the Kiyomizu temple were ornate dragons spewing forth water. Ironically, there are often signs to warn visitors against drinking the water.

Higashi-honganji

Above: This is the entrance to the temple grounds. Notice the netting around the open areas of the structure to keep the birds out.


Below: A close up of the fountain on the island between the two lanes of traffic. I believe it is a lotus, a significant flower in Buddhism.

Lotus



Below: On new year's day (and throughout the first week of the year), many women dress up in kimonos to go to the temple. You can see my fellow travelers took advantage of this by stopping several Meikos to get some great photos.

Meiko

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