Jizouji is translated as “Earthbearer’s Temple”. Like other temples in the region, this too was rebuilt several times from the original. The last update was in the 17th century.
The buddha of this temple is the Jizou Bosatsu. This is the image of the buddha that is calm and often smiling. This is the buddha of extreme perseverance. He is often depicted holding a staff with six rings on it. He shakes the stick to wake us up from dreams of delusion. This is the buddha that is at the gateway to the next world, and acts as a portal for six different kinds of paths for spiritual transmigrating: for heavenly beings, humans, hungry ghosts, hells, demons, and beasts. Jizou Bosatsu is an often found image in graveyards all over Japan. The Jizou Bosatsu is particularly protective of children who are lost or who die too young.
On this path you will maybe start to encounter other people who are walking the same steps that you are. They may do so for all kinds of different reasons. Some to find something for themselves. Some in remembrance of someone they love. In all cases, there is a real sense of human celebration and a seeking for something better, and something good, in people around us, in the lives we get to live, and in maybe finding something that we can share with others.
This really is such a unique and curious path of discovery.