Day 3: No.12 Shozan-ji (焼山寺)

A small shrine representing each 88 sacred temples

Luckily it was not snowing today, however, the walking pilgrim that I met at the Ryokan Yoshino said that there’re still much snow between Ippon-sugi (一本杉) and No.12 Shozan-ji.

Henro Korogashi No.1 out of 6…

After a while I found this sign post with “Henro Korogashi (A steep trail letting the pilgrims rolling down)”. 1/6… so I’ll see this 6 times… It is indeed steep but it was not as expected. While struggling with this steep trail, it started to snow, and it’s rather nice since I feel really hot.

Bangai-Reijyo Chodo-an (番外霊場 長戸庵)

I arrived at the Chodo-an bit earlier than my plan, even though I departed 20 minutes late this morning. I now feel confident with my pace. It is said that Kobo-Daishi took some rest when he headed to No.12 Shozan-ji.

Signpost ?

Bangai-Reijyo Ryusui-an (番外霊場 柳水庵)

It’s getting colder and colder outside, and I found pretty big icicle around spring water. Then all the sudden, I found a relatively large building. It’s probably Ryusui-an.

Bangai-Reijyo Ryusui-an (番外霊場 柳水庵)

It is said… when Kobo-Daishi took the rest at this place, no water were available. So he picked up a branch of willow tree and pray, then clear water rose up. This temple took “柳 (willow tree)” and “水 (water)” for its name from that story.

Jizo (stone statue)

There’re indeed quite many Jizo (stone statue) along the way, and sometimes you also find some message cards as well. I’m actually encouraged by them.

An aura of divinity

Bangai-Reijyo Jyoren-an (番外霊場 浄蓮庵)

At the Jyoren-an, you’ll find this solitary Japanese cedar and Kobo-Daishi statue. It was indeed beautiful with the sun right on the back side.

Henro Korogashi continues… 🙂

It looks like diamond dust

So far, I intentionally increased my pace, because I had to change today’s hotel to the one located bit far than the initially planned one (which was turned out to be under construction…). I now realized that I arrived at Jyoren-an much earlier than expected, so I now feel safe… But afterwards, I realized this over-pace was really problematic for my leg.

The main gate of No.12 Shozan-ji (焼山寺)

Nio-statue at the main gate of No.12 Shozan-ji

Finally I arrived at the No.12 Shozan-ji, after walking more than 4 hours in the mountain. I started to think it’s a kind of luxury to spend this much time for being walking pilgrim, when one of pilgrims in bus tour found me and told me “Wow, are you walking through ? Good luck!”.

The bell-tower of No.12 Shozan-ji

The main temple of No.12 Shozan-ji

The precincts of No.12 Shozan-ji is indeed solemn, and it rose my feelings after long trail. This time, I read the Heart Sutra together with other pilgrims. Now I got used to this specific rhythm, musical pitch and intervals a bit, yes, it’s indeed very difficult 🙂

The temple stamp of Ryusui-an and Joren-an

At Ryusui-an, I found the board saying that you can get the temple stamp of Ryusui-an at No.12 Shozan-ji, hence I asked if I can get it. Then they said I can also get the one for Jyoren-an (where there’s beautiful solitary Japanese cedar) and Jyosan-an which is located between No.12 Shozan-ji and No.13 Dainichi-ji.

By the way, it is really beautiful how they write these scripts on the stamp book. But taking picture/video is prohibited.

The temple stamp of No.12 Shozan-ji

Dedicated toKokuzo-Bosatsu (虚空蔵菩薩)
Founded byEn-no-Gyoja-Odunu (役の行者 小角)
DenominationShingon-sect Koya-group (真言宗高野派)
Mantraうぼう あきゃしゃ きゃらばや  おん ありきゃ まりぼり そわか
Ubou Akyasha Kyarabaya On Arikya Maribori Sowaka
Next templeNo.13 Dainichi-ji (20.8 Km away)
Previous templeNo.11 Fujii-dera (12.9 Km away)
No.12 Shozan-ji