Aug. 14, 2020 UPDATE
Story & Recommendation
See the unforgettable aurora-like green floor of Jisso-in Temple
Green, lush maple leaves reflect on the floor of this temple, moving with the wind; the scene almost reminding you of looking at aurora borealis in Lapland. The floor is cleaned every day so that it will always reflect this scene. If you visit in autumn, the aurora borealis reflecting on the floor will become red, and if you happen to visit this temple in winter, the winds of winter will make the floor turn white. This temple is a monzeki temple, meaning that someone from the imperial family has been a priest at this temple. Many temples were burned down in the fires of the wars that raged in Japan during the Muromachi period but Jisso-in was rebuilt in the present location with the support of shogun Tokugawa Iemitsu in the beginning of Edo period. The temple itself was founded in the year 1229 AD, almost 780 years ago.
Maple leaves reflected on the floor of the temple
The maple leaves outside are reflected on the black, polished floor of the temple, green in spring and summer, and red and yellow in autumn; and the pure snowy white in winter. The length of the reflection changes depending on the time of the day, so you get to see a different sight in the morning and in the afternoon. *Please notice that you can’t take pictures of it.
Over 100 sliding doors
There are historic fusuma sliding doors in each room of the temple. Many of these fusuma were painted by artists of the Kano school, one of the most famous schools of Japanese painting. These firmly outlined paintings on the fusuma sliding doors are works of art so be sure to pay attention to them when touring the temple.
See the rock garden
The rocks and moss in this rock garden reflect the shape of Japan. The moss-covered islands of Japan are surrounded by the sea, in other words the white pebbles. This beautiful garden was reformed into the present shape in 2014 by volunteers under the guidance of the famous garden designer Katsuaki Ogawa. The name of this garden is “The Heart Garden,” the name and garden being a prayer for the victims of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.
Try to find a frog
In the pond of the other garden of the temple, you can see forest green tree frogs. These vividly green frogs are something you don’t often see in cities so take this chance and look for one of these small amphibians. Sometimes the tadpoles of these frogs are raised by temple staff.
- Manner & Tips -
Please do not take any photos inside the temple. Only taking photos from the terrace is permitted. Do not run nor make noise.