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“Kojokan Gate,” Saiho-ji

Location: Kyoto, Japan
Catalog Number: 2810

This is the Kojokan Gate in the 8th century Zen Buddhist temple, Saiho-ji, located on the outskirts of Kyoto, Japan. The Moss Temple, as it is known, is host to 120 varieties of moss. The green makes you feel like you've just entered Oz. When visiting, one must first go through a Buddhist ceremony and sutra writing. The meditative aspect of the sutra writing put me into a "beginners' eyes" state when I entered the first garden. It was stunning. The Kokojan Gate is known as the "first barrier." It begins the test of one's noble ambition to being on the path toward enlightenment. Saiho-ji is a World Heritage site and rightly so.

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