- Kiknkakuji temple and Kitayama period/culture(北山文化)
- What to see in Kinkakuji temple?
- Autumn colors in Kinkakuji temple
- Kinkakuji temple in snow
Kiknkakuji temple and Kitayama period/culture(北山文化)
Kitayama period/culture was established as a fusion of cultures of court nobles, samurai-warriors. Of course it has an influence of Buddhists who learned the Buddhism overseas but it was rather small. As we discussed in the last chapter, “Shariden” is a mixture of these cultures. The Kitayama culture/period is important because led the following “Higashiyama culture/period” which is the origin of the Japanese cultural inheritance like tea-ceremony, Noh, Kado (Japanese flower arrangement), dry garden, and so on. (The picture above is the dry garden in Tenryuji temple. It is one of the most popular garden of Kitayama period.)
What to see in Kinkakuji temple?
An approach to “Shariden”, the golden pavilion
An approach of Kinkakuji. (1 in the map) It is a prelude to “Shariden”, the golden pavilion. We have many maple trees along it.
In autumn time, we can admire one of the most beautifuk autumn colors in Kyoto.
At the front gate (2 in the map), “Five Commandments of Kinkakuji”.
1) You shall not kill anything which has life.
2) You shall not want anything you are not given.
3) You shall not commit adultery.
4) You shall not tell lies.
5) You shall not indulge in Sake.
“Shariden”, the golden pavilion
3 in the map
“Kyo-ko-chi” pond (鏡湖池)
A pond located in front of Shariden. (3 in the map) It makes “Shakkei” of the mt. Kinugasa and even Shariden. “Shakkei” is a technique of Japanese traditional garden building. It “borrows” the scenery behind the garden. A good example of fine garden of Kitayama period.
The Dry garden (方丈庭園)
It is an underrated dry garden in Kinkakuji temple. (4 in the map)Many visitors pay scarce attention to it. In the north side of it, there is a ship shaped pine tree called “Riku-syu-no-matsu (The pine-tree ship on the ground).
Ginga sui (銀河水)
Ashikaga Yoshimitsu used to draw water for tea ceremony from the small well. (5 in the map)
The cascade was named after an old Chinese anecdote: A carp crawling up to the top of the cascade became a dragon. In the East, dragon is God of water an rain though it means something evil in the West. The stone in front of the cascade means a carp. (6 in the map)
There used to be a villa of the Saionjis. Now we can see a small pagoda and satues of Jizo, the Buddhist deity who saves people in suffer.(7 in the map)
You ka tei (夕佳亭)
“Yuka-tei” means “The hut in which we can have a good view in the twilight”.(8 in the map)
The “Tokobashira (Indicated by arrow in the 1st picture)” made of Nanten tree indicated in the picture is so rare because Nanten has always thin tree (The tree in the 2nd picture).
The oldest building in Kinkakuji. It was built in the 16th century. Acla (The deity in Shoigon traditon) is enshrined.(9 in the map)
Autumn colors in Kinkakuji temple
In front of Shariden, we have scarce autumn leaves. We better adore them from the back yard.
The approach is one of the best place to admire the autumn colors in Kyoto. Vermilion and pink stand out in green.
If you were interested in Autumn leaves in kyoto, see the video above.
Kinkakuji temple in snow
Kinkakuji in snow take your breath away. We have only 1 or 2 snowing days in a year. If you were in snowing days, you better rush to Kinkakuji.