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Words-and-Pictures: Seikenji

Note: This selection of Words-and-Pictures was made on September 19, 2001, as I walked on the Old Tokaido.

Seikenji is in Okitsu in Shizuoka Prefecture, which is Station #17 (from Tokyo) on the Old Tokaido Highway. You can read about my visit to Seikenji in my Logbook.

Seikenji as it appears from the Old Tokaido

The main hall. Ieyasu's room was in the back of this building.

This tree is the same species as the one under which the Buddha was sitting when he received enlightenment. When we visited in 1998, I told Tomoko the story, and we heard her parents laughing behind us. When we asked what was funny, they told us that even though Tomoko's grandfather and uncle were priests--her mother was born in a temple--she was learning this story from a foreigner!

By the way, my juzu (prayer beads) are made from the same kind of wood.

The bell tower

The gentlemen below are part of Seikenji's Gohyakku Rakkan, or 500 Arhats (Disciples of the Buddha). This is a popular exhibit at various temples. Purportedly "faithful" likenesses of the historic Buddha's 500 disciples, the popular belief is that if you look closely, you will find at least one that looks like someone you know. (Read here about a visit to a much newer set of the Rakkan, and an explanation of the word "rakkan" itself.)

Posted September 27, 2019

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