Well, here are the photographs I took in Taiwan last May. They do not even begin to touch the hairy moments of the journey, or the day of visiting temples with dear DurAn, or the heat… DurAn, wonderful monk, four month ordained charged with the task of showing me around with no common language between us save nods and smiles and waving of hands.
The nun we met had been ordained since childhood. She turned her rosary, constantly. I remember signaling, and using our electronic dictionary, to say something like, “I hope we are doing as well, when we reach her age”! We both could appreciate her commitment, and the hard training of her life. It was a happy meeting for all of us.
This image of Xuan Zhuang, our Buddhist Pilgrim of yesterday, rests in the grounds of a temple in Naruto, Japan. Behind him is a garden devoted to Kobo Daishi. “Is there a connection,”? Or perhaps the question is “why is this image here at this temple, in Japan”? The only connection I can find is that Kobo Daishi traveled to the town, Xi’an, in China where Zuan Zhuang was based, but not at the same time.
For as long as I can remember I have been attracted to this image. The traveling monk I guess.