A Day Trip to Kamakura
Kamakura Travel Blog› entry 10 of 32 › view all entries
Hiromi had talked to Jana and at the end of April and we agreed to go to Kamakura to check out a couple of the temples/shrines there and to see the huge Buddha that they have. So we did that on today.
I should state that I have found I am really getting into the traditional Japanese architecture on the temples and shrines. I like the tradition wood temples with there amazing angles and simple designs. The Chinese ones are more colorful but there is just something I like about the traditional Japanese designs.
The first temple (Engaku-ji) we went to see had the most amazing wood carvings on the doors.
After that we went to Kencho-ji (another temple) that is the oldest Zen training monastery in Japan. I have a quote from the brochure that I like “If you have lost your true self, all phenomena bring you nothing but annoyance. If you discover your essence of mind, you can follow nothing but the true path.” Rankei Doryu’s teachings from “Recording Sayings”
The temple also had a national treasure…700 year old juniper trees. They were HUGE! Of course part of the temple was up a huge hill and I made it most the way before the scary stairs made me stop but the view was amazing.
We went to see another shrine but I was impressed because most of it was being repainted or had some repairs going on. Jana and I joked about “Coming Soon: An Old Shrine” but I was a bit disappointed.
After that, it was time for the Great Buddha (Daibutsu). The Daibutsu was made in 1252 A.D. and it weighs 121 tons. It survived a tidal wave in 1494 that washed the foundation away and in 1923 the base was once again damaged but the Buddha made it through that also. It is one strong Daibutsu.
The Daibutsu was an amazing sight and it is hard to believe that it is so old. I think the Daibutsu was my favorite part of the trip simply because it was cool to look at.