2-6-4 Sakuragi, Taito-ku, Tokyo
(Closest stations are Nippori, Uguisudani and Ueno)
It’s Monday morning again. Travel inspiration required to get through the day. This was one of those places you come across in your travels completely by chance, and you know you were meant to be there exactly at the time you stumbled upon it.
This beautiful, other-worldly temple area is home said to be home to 84, 000 Jizo images, the Shinto god known to be protector of children (and, some say, travellers). There’s actually not a heap of information about this temple widely available online, and a lot of it is conflicting, so to save further fruitless searches for anyone who comes across this post and is interested in finding out more, I’ve copied this information from a photo I took of a placard inside the temple area:
This temple was founded in 1666 and called Joen-in temple. Its present name, Jomyo-in temple was adopted in 1723. The front gate now standing built some time from 1716 to 1735.
A priest called Myoun, who became the chief priest of this temple in 1876, had faith in the guardian deity of children (Jizo) and decided to erect one thousand stone images of Jizo. After having completed one thousand images, he reset his goal to eighty four thousand images.
The great bronze image of Jizo in the precincts was built in 1906 in memory of those killed during the Russo-Japanese War.
The religious service for Hechima (sponge cucumbers) “Hechima Kuyou” is performed every year on the 15th of August according to the lunar calendar. A lot of people attend because the religious service is said to bring about miraculous cures of illness such as coughing and asthma.
That’s what it’s about; nothing I can say will do justice to how beautiful it is, though, so once more I’m going to let my photographs do the talking…