Across Japan, Buddha statues are commonly depicted in the seated meditation pose; however the reclining Buddha at Nanzoin Temple symbolizes Buddha’s last moments before he enters paranirvana, a scene which is more often seen portrayed by Southeast Asian Buddha statues. For 500 yen, visitors can enter the prayer room inside the Buddha at Nanzoin, perhaps absorbing the inner spirit of Siddhartha himself.
Nanzoin Temple was erected in 1899, a monument to the Shingon school of Buddhism which postulates that enlightenment can be found through isolation, contemplation, and nature (so it follows that the Nanzoin Buddha is only accessible up a mountain path).
Like many temples, Nanzoin is associated with luck. A notable example is that a chief priest of the temple won the lottery after leaving his ticket beside a statue of one of the Seven Lucky Gods, prompting visitors to do the same (and supposedly with the same good fortune). Maybe you, too, will receive a windfall here!
Sign up for insider tips & sneak peeks into the diverse world of dining in Japan.