Todaiji – Nara

This is a copy of a photograph showing a large ceremony in progress in the 1980’s. It give one an idea of the scale of this temple.

Zuikoji, Seki, Mie-ken, Kansai.

This was our first visit of the day, the second one being Umpuku-ji in the afternoon.

The priest came and picked us up from the station in his car and was able to fit us into his busy schedule for a two-hour visit. Zuikoji was the family temple of Suigan Yogo Roshi and now is run by his son and his wife. (Priests of the Soto School in Japan may marry unlike the priest in our Order.)

Suigan Roshi helped Rev. Master Jiyu with making translations of a number of chapters of the Shobogenzo both while she was living at Sojiji and also when she moved to Umpukuji. These temples are about ten miles distant from each other.

While visiting here Iain and I were each given a fan with calligraphy done by Suigan Roshi which we will both treasure.

The temple gardener was putting up a prop for a tree limb in danger of falling down and breaking. Helping elderly trees in this way is common practice in Japan.

Main Hall Zuiko-ji

The main hall at Zuiko-ji. Rev. Master Jiyu would often walk over to Zuiko-ji from Umpuku-ji, a distance of about ten miles, to assist Yogo Roshi during large ceremonies.

Precentors Chair

Thought somebody might like to see a close up of the precentors chair.

Rev. Yogo’s Wife

Soon after we arrived Rev. Yogo’s wife served tea and brought out the family photo albums for us to look at. There was a very moving photograph of his father, when Abbot of Sojiji, dressed in full ceremonial robes extending his hand in greeting to his wife. She was wearing a blue-green small kesa much like the ones the Lay Ministers wear in our Order (Order of Buddhist Contemplatives).