Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Slippers wait for visitors in front of the main hall of Kezo-Ji. When we visited on a sunny Sunday afternoon we were the only visitors there, due mainly to the temples location at 456 meters above see level on a remote mountain between Matsue and Mihonoseki.
Previously I posted on the giant Fudo Myo o statue and the Nio here as well as the fantastic views.
Above the main doors a fine carving of a Tennyo, a buddhist "celestial maiden" sometimes translated as angel.
The temple was founded about 1200 years ago and was originally of the Tendai sect but in the kamakura period it switched and became a Zen temple of the Rinzai sect which it continues to be today.
During the Warring States Period the temple was badly damaged but was rebuilt about 400 years ago when the Lord of the newly built Matsue castle chose it as the temple to protect Matsue. The building date from this period and since the late 19th Century the structures have slowly deteriorated to their present state.
The temple is well worth visiting, but unfortunately you need a car or take a bus from Matsue and then walk up the steep mountain road.