The hilly complex at Hasedera encompasses many interesting buildings, each with a unique design that features particular combinations of stone, wood, tile, and painted mud walls, as well as careful landscaping.
An alternative view of the main gate from a garden within the temple complex.
This is the interior of the Kobo Daishi Hall.
Yet another of the many sub-temples in the complex.
A woman unrolls a scroll painting of the bodhisattva of compassion Kannon purchased at the temple. She will eventually fill the spaces surrounding the image of Kannon (white head visible just below large wood block) with inscriptions by temple priests from various temples she intends to visit in the future.
The main hall at Hasedera commands a superb view of nearby hills that can be seen from various angles from the wooden balcony.
An image of the fierce-looking protective deity Fudo-myo-o enshrined within the temple in cocrejpn0030.
Close-up of Kannon image in main hall.
Kannon image in main hall.
A pathway from the main plaza leads to this sub-temple. To the right are numerous stone statues of Jizo lining the walkway. These are commonly donated, and dressed with aprons and caps, by faithful who have lost a child (usually while in the womb) with hopes that the soul will fare well.
Here hang the b&quoema," or tablets upon which faithful write personal wishes that they want the deity of the shrine to assist in fulfilling. These hang just in front of the shrine, which is behind and to the right of the photographer here.
Just behind the main plaza is this Shinto shrine dedicated to the local deity.
This old grave site has a large traditional stone and the space is nicely framed by a Shinto torii. This kind of complex shows how Buddhist and Shinto forms merge easily in Japanese sensibility.
This is just one of hundreds of such massive entrance gates to a temple in the town of Koyasan.
This is the same structure as in cocrejpn0163.
One of many old stone images in the forest.
The actual small shrine where Kobo Daishi's body was placed is behind the large mausoleum. These visitors stand between the mausoleum and the shrine while facing the shrine, which is to the right in this photo. The man in the white jacket is the guide, who tells them about the history of the shrine and instructs them how to pray, which they all subsequently do. In front of the shrine, there are always many fresh flowers donated by the faithful.
This Shinto-style shrine stands in the heart of the Garan complex and reflects the importance of the traditions of worship dedicated to the "local" deity of the mountain. It appears that Kukai revered these "kami" deeply and this reverence continues via regular rituals today.
This site appears to be dedicated to a family as well as to a corporation.
This is a corporate site.
Near the end of the path to Okunoin, just prior to crossing the last bridge before going up to Kukai's mausoleum, there is a line of statues with water troughs in front of them. Vistors pour water over the statues as an act of devotion. This ritual action shares something both with the cleansing of the mouth prior to entering a Shinto shrine, where the same sort of ladle and trough is used, as well as the cleansing of ancestral gravestones that is practiced in August during the Obon season.