December 29, 2013

Todaiji's Nigatsudo

Nigatsudo, "February Building", another famous construction in the Todaiji complex. It is famed for its yearly rite (called "Omizutori"), held in February of the lunisolar calendar (March in our current calendar). Strategic sections of the temple are lit on fire with torches carried by monks. The sparks that fall down to the visitors sitting on the grassy knoll below are seen as good luck.

The current iteration of Nigatsudo was built in 1669, after an Omizutori went awry in 1667 and burned the temple down.

One of the pathways leading up to Nigatsudo, which is located to the east of the Daibutusden.

It reads, Nigatsudo.

At the top of the stairs in the first photo.

A quite fierce-looking dragon wraps around the water pavilion.


View from the top. The mountaintop and lattice-like structure are the remnants of Nara Dreamland, Japan's answer to Disneyland which closed after 50 years of operation in 2006. In 2011, a photographer snuck in and took eerie photos that briefly went viral.

The tea room, where you could serve yourself hot tea, provided you wash the cup afterward.

There was a row a small buildings designed for silent contemplation.

A small pomegranate tree.

Some seeds scattered on the ground.

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