Portraits Around the World: A Magic Pillar at Todaiji Temple

Every week I post a new portrait of a person that’s radiating with a touch of magic. This one in particular has a lot of ‘special’ attached to it because of its historical significance. To see more Portraits Around the World, click here.

When I walked through the entrance of Todaiji Temple the firs thing I saw was a big sign reading ‘free tours in English’ (and a few other languages). As many backpackers can relate, whenever I see the word free I jump on the opportunity. A woman smiled and lead me to the stairs, granting us a marvelous view of the temple ahead. She told me about the cobble stones that line the pathway and along the gardens, the pride of this Buddha in Japan (it’s the largest bronze Buddha in the country), and sent me on my way with a few more facts to ponder.

Todaiji Temple2

One thing she said stuck with me through my walk as I marveled at the pure grandiosity of the statue before me and the pillars seeming to skyrocket towards the ceiling. She’d said there was a hole behind the Buddha and those who squeeze through it will be granted enlightenment. Well, that’s actually what I read after the fact because I honestly wasn’t quite sure what she had meant to tell me. I did know that this hole was special and that it would be quite the gift to make it through.

After seeing the actual size of the hole, I realized how difficult a task it might actually be. As a solo traveling carrying a camera and gear I didn’t get the chance to try, but I had a lot of fun watching other visitors try their luck.

PAtW Hole

Todaiji Temple copy

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1 Comment

  1. January 27, 2016

    My daughter managed to crawl through the hole. I gave up up the idea after seeing how “big” the hole was!

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