On Friday we enjoyed a Japanese-style lunch offered by Prof. Shimizu, Keido Chisan Koho Zenji’s grand-niece. She recently retired from a university career as a physicist researching and teaching quantum optics. We all really enjoyed her company and appreciated her generosity.
Over lunch she shared some of her presonal childhood memories of her great-uncle with us, and how he encouraged her in her studies. She mentioned that he had instilled into her the importance of education for woman and this in turn influenced her in her professional life as a teacher.
Here is the Vice Abbot of Chouju-in, a Soto Zen Temple in the countryside near Narita.
Thanks to Eiko for making the visit to this temple possible. We enjoyed our short stay and will probably go back during Golden Week towards the end of the month if possible. Everything in this small temple was familiar, the priest was friendly and spoke English well.
In the Ihaido (a section of the temple where memorial tablets are enshrined) we saw 88 bags of sand, with the temple seal on each bag, which had been collected from the temples on the classic pilgrimage around the island of Shikoku. Thus the merit of the pilgrimage was offered for the benefit of all those enshrined in the Ihaido, and all beings.
I am so happy to be on the road at last and feel astonishingly ‘at home’ in Japan. Everything, the roads, the houses, the gardens, the rooms…everything is on a mini scale, rather like in Cornwall only smaller! People are SO polite, so considerate of others in their actions it is completely touching.
I am in Vancouver at the Lions Gate Buddhist Priory where Rev. Master Koten is the resident priest. Tomorrow, April 11th, I fly to Tokyo, Narita landing on April 12th at 3.55 pm. The time on this Blogger is set to Japanese time.
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There will be more postings so do check back from time to time.