There is much to see and experience here at Kanjizaiji (The Temple of Kannon). Due to many fires and the main temple burning down repeatedly, the final rebuilt temple is made of concrete. While not as aesthetic as those made of wood, it does offer a certain sense of security.

Historically, this area is significant as it housed the final remnants of the Taira clan (defeated by the Genji clan in the Kamakura era). The incredible poetic accounts of the warriors of the Heike (Taira) and Genji (Minamoto) clans can be found in the classic “Heike Monogatari” or “Tale of the Heike”. Great reading and highly recommended if you are into stories of samurai who are, in their own right,”worth a thousand men”.

What I felt was so interesting about Kanjizaiji is that while parts of our history and heritage can be attacked, and burned, and destroyed, there are other parts that seem to continue forward, to endure, and refuse to be dominated. As you travel from temple to temple on the Shikoku Pilgrimage there is a sense of awe of this perseverance. I suppose we could weep for the temples and buildings and artifacts that are lost, but there is much that remains to experience and celebrate. And as Zen Buddhism is a philosophy and way of living in the present moment, there is a spirit of rebuilding, redesigning, and re-discovering wherever, and whenever, you are. I love that.