Overdue Updates

Hello Friends and Neighbours!

Thank you very much for visiting this page. I am trying to update periodically, but life sometimes just takes over and it is hard to do all the things I want to in the same day.

Regarding the Ohenro journey, more updates are coming to the site, but the commentary is taking some time to work on. At first I simply put up the photos I took during the visit and then return to it with my notes, a little research, and some discussion. I hope that you enjoy taking a look at the photos of these incredible temples.

I have to admit, if any of the photos look half-good, it is only because it is basically impossible to get a bad photograph. Visiting each temple grounds is a kind of submersion into a pool of culture, spirituality, and nature. I am not sure that I can find a parallel to a Canadian experience to properly compare. I think that there is no such thing.

Canada has for it, a great sprawling natural landscape. The coastline, the mountains, the prairies, the Canadian shield of stone and rock, the lakes and rivers, the hills and forests… It all blends into a seamless stream of nature. There are cities and towns, train tracks and roads, but they are strange artifacts that decorate a world that belongs to the animals, the hills, and the seasons.

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One figure of so many at Upenji.

The Ohenro journey, on the other hand, seems to be like a visit of the familiar, and each temple seems to be a welcome to another experience, or a new understanding.

Of course, I cannot comment too much on the actual journey that the walking Ohenro endure. I can see them at the temples, and I see them from the windows of the tour bus and from my car as I go about my weekly work. I have to admit that they are a marvel to see. Determined and focussed to keep moving forward. There seems to be something in each step that is a reminder to those that bear witness.

As I am currently on the “reverse course” (88 to 1) this site gets updated from the last temple moving forward. Up until last month I have been to temple 58. So, that is only 3o of the 88. Next instalment will be a 2 day trip, but I think it will be a bit easy. We are going to stay overnight at a hot spring hotel in Ehime Prefecture in the middle. I will post pictures here for you to see.

That is one thing I want to mention about this site and the blog. My intention throughout this experience is to simply “take you along” with me. I put the photos on each temple page in the order that I see them. So the first photo is usually one of walking up to the gates and taking in what I see as I go. My first few temple visits looked a bit stilted I think, particularly as I was trying to get the buildings “framed” and looking in a way as one would look at an historical exhibit. In the last few visits I am trying to change the style a little and to take pictures on a “smaller scale”. I want to see the things within each site. Sometimes it is a building, but sometimes it is a face carved in stone, a flower, weathered trees, moss growing over statues, or something in the corner that pulls me there.

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There is something in every corner.

The Ohenro experience that you will have will be your own. And you will see some of the things I have seen, and your eye will draw you out to see the things that you need to. And you will see much that I will not see, or cannot see. That is something interesting too.

In the meantime, I hope this blog finds you well. Travel safe.

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