An alternative view of the main gate from a garden within the temple complex.
This ema reads, "May Bun-chan's leg [or foot] heal quickly and may he graduate without any difficulty." Imprinted on the ema to the left is a place for the name and address of the petitioner, which is given in full. The petitioner's name is female; presumably this is a mother praying for her son.
The path from Ichinohashi to Okunoin winds through massive trees, like the one on the left, and is lit by stone lanterns.
This young woman sits in the shade on a ledge beside the main hall. She holds her cell phone and either reads or sends an email message.
Many of the centuries-old structures in the forest enroute to Okunoin are crumbling. Some of the more prominent ones close to the pathway are being restored.
At this building within the Hasedera complex, visitors can purchase amulets (o-mamori) and various memorablia. Here too pilgrims can receive a large stamp for placement in their "stamp book" which documents their visits to many holy places.
This short path leading to a small shrine within the Ikuta Jinja compound is lined by vermillion torii. Many Shinto shrines will have paths almost covered by torii in this manner. The torii are commonly erected on behalf of donors to the shrine.
This ema, written in an accomplished calligraphic style, reads, " For the curing of illness -- [Name] -- December 26, 1957. Please, somehow, help."
The main hall at Hasedera commands a superb view of nearby hills that can be seen from various angles from the wooden balcony.
This is the same structure as in cocrejpn0163.
View of five-layered pagoda from balcony of main hall.
The long path through the forest to Okunoin.
Some of the grave markers in Koyasan are stone and some are in the traditional Shinto architectural style.
Some of the grave stones surrounding Okunoin seem to depict either actual people or at least their idealized forms as ordinary social beings. Here we see a mother with children.
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 photo was taken from the right of the main hall.
A standing statue of Jizo, who may not be as tall as the trees but he is ever so graceful.
The path to Okunoin is not always level. The shifting topography makes for a more pleasurable walk.
Visible in the background is a small hill of Jizo statues, seen close up in photo 168.
This structure marks a large grove within the Minatogawa shrine compound in which Kusunoki Masanari died in 1336.
This map of the shrine compound is erected near the entrance.
This plaque in front of the tree with the himorogi says that the tree was over 500 years old when it was severely injured by burns received in the bombing of Kobe during WWII. However, even though shattered, it managed to stay alive, and so became revered as a symbol of rebirth and resuscitation. The plaque refers to it as a "divine (kami) tree."