Todaiji Temple is the temple which the Emperor Shomu was founded in the Nara era. Most of building and Buddha statues are national treasures and are registered as the world heritage in 1998. Let’s go into such Todaiji Temple from the crossing “Hall of the Great Buddha” being in an approach entrance. It is in the place of on foot about 20 minutes from Kintetsu Nara Station to the west.
Souvenir shops form a line on the left side of the approach to the temple and many deer, which there are everywhere, greet and welcome you. Let’s buy a deer rice cracker for greeting deer. While you do so it this way, big Nandaimon (Great South Gate) appears in front.
The height of the gate is 25.46 meters and is the maximum main gate of a Buddhist temple in Japan.
It was built at the Kamakura period and designated as the national treasure.
If you pass through Nandaimon, Chumon (The middle gate) is appears in front. The back is Daibutsu-den (the Great Buddha hall). When you go the corridor to the left and enter the inside towards the gate, there is the Hall of the Great Buddha which is one of the world’s largest wooden construction architecture.
The right hand of Great Buddha expresses the meaning “There is nothing for you to be afraid of”, the left hand expresses the meaning “to grant the wish of people”.
As for the time which Emperor Shomu founded in 743, the misfortunes such as political situation uneasiness and a drought, famine, the outbreak of smallpox continued. The Emperor who was deeply worried in it intended to rule the country by power of the Buddhism and erected this great statue of Buddha. It was the national big project which 2,600,000 people participated in erection from the whole country.
There is what’s called popular “Hashira Kuguri” (to crawl through the hole of pillar) of the Todaiji Temple Hall of the Great Buddha. It is said that there is the benefit of good health when you pass through the hole of the pillar which being said the same size as the hole of the nose of Great Buddha. It is extremely popular even from a child to a foreigner. If it is petite woman, she seems to be able to pass even if she is adult.
|Address:||Zoshicho 406-1 Nara, Nara 630-8211 Japan|
|Access:||Kintetsu Nara-sen Line “Kintetsu-Nara-eki” station (20 minutes walk)|
|Price:||500 yen (Adult)
300 (15 years old and younger)
Free (pre‐school child)