Saturday, April 20, 2019

Kyushu Pilgrimage Temple 36 Kansenji

There are many different reasons for doing a pilgrimage. Among my reasons, one is to explore, discover, & learn. On the 108 temple Kyushu Pilgrimage I walked there was not a lot of famous temples like on the Shikoku Pilgrimage or the Saigoku Pilgrimage.

There were also lots of surprises, like Gyoshinji, the temple I had visited a few hours earlier, but there were also lots of run-of-the-mill, small temples with no great architecture or gardens, like Kansenji.

It is rare to find somewhere that does not have something interesting for me to learn. Kansenji had quite a few statues, but one, in particular, struck me. It was of Kobo Daishi, the focus of this and many other pilgrimages in Japan, unusually holding a baby.

This is a Koyasu Daishi and is related to a story from the 61st temple of the Shikoku Pilgrimage where Kobo Daishi met a pregnant woman having a difficult and painful birth. He prayed for her and the result was a successful birth, so this temple is a popular place for expectant mothers to visit.


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