The third temple in my henro-for-a-day pilgrimage was Konsenji.
Between Temple 2 and 3, I took one of the ‘henro michi’ – little paths maintained especially for walking henro (pilgrims). The little pathway actually brought me to the side of the temple, rather than the front entrance.
And of course, there was a bus tour group.
This temple has a few interesting little odds and ends.
For example, do you see that stone beneath a shelter beneath the bright-orange pagoda?
You probably don’t, so I’ll offer a close-up.
This is the ‘Benkei’ stone, which was supposedly lifted by Benkei when he was passing through here with his
buddy master Yoshitsune in order to show off his strength.
I’m sure I missed a lot of the history, folklore, symbolism, etc. of these temples. If I were attempting the pilgrimage for more than a day I’d definitely want to read at least one of the books about the history/lore of the pilgrimage.
What I did not miss, however, is the lovely synergy of nature and temple architecture.
And of course, there are always the henro.
I met this bicycle henro, who was kind enough to pose for a picture. I hear that doing the pilgrimage by bicycle takes about two weeks.
Three temples down, two temples to go (or actually, three temples to go … I explain in the next post).