Saturday, April 4, 2015

Seeing, hearing and inhaling (Kōya-san I)

A mere trip to a famous location. Simply another exotic beauty observed through a foreigner's eyes. Just an outsider trying to grasp even half of the significance of a religious place. Yet another immersion to the other side. Yet another day in the rabbit hole. Nothing special - standing in line of millions with their similar images and words.

This was the last place I visited outside of Kyoto before returning. Here everything came to a conclusion. It had to. The final exam in the form of seeing, hearing and inhaling. A trip to Kōya-san, one of the most important religious locations in Japan. The center of Shingon-buddhism including many temples, the largest cemetery in Japan and a mausoleum to the monk Kūkai.

Hot summer air getting thinner and cooler in the mountains. Leave that behind, absorb this. Fewer people than trees, a city of 600 year old cedars. Sculptures, tombstones and the moon getting paler in the night, almost void of features and names.

Osaka - Kōya-san, August 20th 2013:

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