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Consuming shojin ryori (Japanese Buddhist cuisine)is a significant part of the spiritual training and journey of the Yamabushi mountain monks. The natural and seasonal vegetation of the mountainous region is central to this mainly plant-based cuisine and is thought to help in the religious practices of the local monks.
However, unlike the 100% vegetarian form of shojin ryori consumed by the Zen Buddhist monks, the cuisine of Mt. Yudono’s Yamabushi features fish, as well as mountain vegetables. The addition of fish is believed to help facilitate the symbolic “rebirth” that the monks undergo during their pilgrimage through the mountains of Dewasanzan, and helps them return to their corporeal bodies after their spiritual journey is completed.
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