Thursday, November 21, 2013

Ginkakuji, the Silver Pavilion of Kyoto

JS: "Monkey!!! please lead the way!!!"
Actually I was a blind guide, Monkey has to submit information to Mr. JS whenever he how old is this building, its name, architecture period, which style, other peculiar information that we need to be aware of and so on....

Since it was also my first trip, I had to read it out from the book :P
Monkey: "We are at philosopher's walk my dear."

JS: "Yea so which philosopher took this route?"
Monkey >.<
"I dunno which Watanabe is this!!! it was during the 20th century."

Oh well, it was very rude of me to refer any japanese men as Watanabe and every school children as Chibi Maruko!!!

JS and Monkey discussing some national issue by the canal under the Cherry Blossom.

Philosopher's Walk is a 30 minutes route linking the famous Nanzenji and Ginkakuji. Our destination was Ginkakuji....instead of taking public transport, taking a stroll by the canal was really relaxing.

During the 20th century it was thought that the famous philosopher and university professor Nishida Kitaro took this very same route and meditate here. I can understand why, because the entire 30 minutes walk, this path is lined with Cherry Blossom trees....ohhh I can so imagine the beauty it holds during the Hanami season :)))))

There were also benches and little tea houses by this canal if you are feeling a little tired but I lurve to make excuses just to indulge in tea and sweets :):):):) Along this path, there are also shrines that you can visit...and again our mission was Ginkakuji.

Finally we arrived at Ginkakuji's garden and this Watanabe was busy creating the Zen Garden. With soft strokes and grace, he swept the sand in a single stroke. It looked so easy but apparently required a lot of intense focus and calmness.

GAH!!! dun ask me how to build this. I would rather dance on it :P How do u even do it without any foot prints? Do they know Qigong and flew on top the sand as they create this?

It's all sand, and it has to be re-created each and every day!!!! The design goes with the season, curated by their landscape garden artist. There was also a huge mountain of sand in perfect conical shape, reflecting the Mount Fuji.

I was starring very close and long at the mosses here. It's almost like mini bonsai but in mosses format...hahahahaha. So pretty!!!!!

Ginkakuji or the Silver Pavilion
built in 1490 to emulate the famous Golden Pavilion on the other side of the town. Its nickname was derived bcoz of this....a contrast to the Golden Pavilion built by Yoshimasa's grandfather. Gold pavilion for the grandfather and silver one for Yoshimasa.

The beautiful zen landscape complemented the simple pavilion which now serves as a temple. In fact the construction of Ginkakuji was halted during the war hence it was not finished. It looked as it is till Yoshimasa's death.

Such unfinished look is famously known as "Wabi-Sabi" in Japan. It is an acceptance of beauty which are imperfect and incomplete. This can be applied to buildings, tablewares, flower arrangements, pottery and arts.

Another look again at Ginkakuji, how such unfinished work and imperfection could be so beautiful.
aaaahhhhh *breathe deeply*

It sure gave me a form of satisfaction, sitting there, enjoying its wabi-sabi beauty :)))) and made me realised among the imperfection, there's beauty and solitude in life. Why do we always have to focus on errors and imperfection when one can find austerity innit? I guess that's very human to alwiz pin-point only on the negative energy in life. This trip has given me a lot to think and enlightened my Monkey mind and soul. Thus we have decided to visit Japan more often...BAHAHAHAHAHA.

okie dokie tickets are booked, off we go again very soon :)):))
before that, I have a few battles to be won at work :))) and to put it in a more zen and positive manner....I have a few important matters to be achieved and completed with flying colors.

Do you? :)))


Jen said...

Wow, what great pictures of Ginkakuji. You were fortunate to see them working on the sand garden. I can't imagine how they create something like that every day with no footprints either! It certainly is a beautiful place.

CHER-RY said...

Hello Jen,

Thank you for dropping by :) Yes we were pretty lucky to see how it's been done. Only through observation, one can learn to appreciate it :)