Temples Of Japan

Temples of Japan - Pilgrimages

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Kami Daigoji Temple
Entrance to the Kami Daigoji Temple Mountain Trek

What is a Pilgrimage?

In dictionary.com, the word pilgrimage is defined as the following:

"a journey, especially a long one, made to some sacred place as an act of religious devotion"

"any long journey, especially one undertaken as a quest or as a consequence of a vow, as to pay homage"

Every religion in this world urges it's followers to go on a certain pilgrimage during their lifetime.  Muslims have the Hajj (trip to Mecca), Hindus have the trips to holy place(s) like Varanasi in northern India, Jews have the trip to the Jerusalem etc.

Buddhism also encourages it's followers to visit the holy places and temples associated with Lord Buddha.  Universally Buddhists like to visit the eight sacred places associated with Buddha.  First four places are associated with "life" of Buddha (in Japanese it is called "inouchi"):
1) Lumbini, birth place of Buddha,
2) Bodhgaya, place of Buddha's enlightenment,
3) Sarnath, place of Buddha's first sermon,
4) Kusinara, Place of Buddha's passing away.
Four more places of Miracles associated with Lord Buddha.  They are:
5) Savatthi, place of the Twin Miracle,
6) Sankasia, place of the descendent from heaven,
7) Rajgir, place of taming the drunken elephant, Nalagiri,
8) Vesali, place of offering of honey by a band of monkeys.
Buddhist pilgrims visit these eight places as one pilgrimage or two separate pilgrimages.  These places are all in and around continental India, please refer to the Indian tourism web site if you are interested in these pilgrimages.

In this website, as per the theme, I would like introduce my readers about the temple pilgrimages in Japan, that Japanese traditionally do in their lifetime (or aspire to do).

Read about the origins of temple pilgrimages in Japan:

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