Adashino Nenbutsu-ji Temple is a Buddhist temple located in Adashino-cho, Toriimoto, Saga, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto City. It was built during the Heian period by Kobo Daishi to honour anonymous dead souls. Adashino means “place of sorrow”. In August, the temple holds a ceremony called "Sento Kuyo" . A ceremony dedicated to the spirits of the dead and about ten thousands stone statues are lit up with candles. Locals dressed in summer kimono light thousands of candles.
The World Health Organization on Monday raised its pandemic alert level from Phase 3 to Phase 4, warning of a significant increase in the risk of a pandemic. The US, Canada, Spain and Britain confirmed cases earlier but no deaths have been reported outside Mexico. Mexico has raised the number of probable deaths to 152, with 1,614 suspected sufferers under observation.
Showa Day is a Japanese annual holiday held on April 29 to reflect on Japan's Showa period. It is a part of the collection of holidays known as Golden Week. It originally honors the birthday of Emperor Showa. After his death, it was renamed” Greenery Day”. It was celebrated as national holiday between 1989 and 2006. Greenery Day was moved to May 4 in 2007 and April 29 was changed to Showa Day.
In 1930, Ohara Magosaburo, president of Kurashiki Spinning Company, founded the Ohara Museum of Art in Kurashiki, Okayama Prefecture. This private museum, featuring Western modern art, is the oldest in Japan. It was architecturally designed to imitate the ancient Greek Pantheon. The museum originally consisted almost entirely of French painting and sculpture of the 19th and 20th centuries which Kojima Torajiro bought in Europe. Kojima Torajiro, a painter as well as an art collector, collected art pieces, such as El Greco, Monet, Renoir, Corot, Gauguin, Picasso, Matisse and Rodin, with great support from Ohara Magosaburo. Kojima died in 1929. Ohara Magosaburo established this museum to commemorate Kojima.
The Akita Shinkansen is a Mini-shinkansen line in Japan. Mini-shinkansen is the train converting 1,067 mm narrow gauge railway lines to 1,435 mm standard gauge for use by Shinkansen train services. It links Tokyo Station and Akita Station in Akita prefecture with direct service. It operates on the Tohoku Shinkansen tracks from Tokyo Station to Morioka Station in Iwate prefecture. It uses the Tazawako Line tracks from Morioka Station to Omagari Station. From there to Akita Station, it uses the Ou Main Line tracks.
Hirosaki -jo is a Japanese castle located in Hirosaki City, Aomori Prefecture, Japan. It was constructed in 1611 by the local Tsugaru clan. Hirosaki-jo was originally built with a 5 storied castle tower which was struck by lightning and burned to the ground in 1627. The tower was not rebuilt until 1810. The new 3 storied castle tower is built atop the inner moat. Hirosaki-jo is famous throughout Japan for the more than 2600 cherry trees. The trees fill its grounds. Over a million people enjoy the sakura matsuri (cherry blossom festival) when the cherry blossoms are in bloom, usually during the end of April and beginning of May.
Hyuga is one of the Hyuga-class helicopter destroyers being built for the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. The new ships will be the largest combatant ship operated by Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. She is able to carry up to eleven helicopters and her primary mission will be anti-submarine warfare, using the helicopters on board. Hyuga has a full-length flight deck and so is able to use three helicopters at the same time.
Kurashiki is located in southwest Okayama prefecture next to the Seto Inland Sea. Kurashiki was a location where the rice produced in the area was collected and distributed by utilizing shipping along the Kurashiki-gawa Canal. The town had gradually been developed as a riverport during the Edo period. Kurashiki became an area directly controlled by the Shogunate at that time. This form was called “Tenryo”. An entire section of the town has been preserved from the Edo Period. There still exist white walled 'namako' storehouses with black roof tiles, traditional private residences and wealthy merchant mansions. This area around the banks of Kurashiki Canal was designated as Bikan Historical Quarter in 1979.
Omiwa Jinja is a Shinto shrine located in Sakurai City, Nara Prefecture. It is said to be the oldest shrine in Japan. The shrine has a mountain ,named Mount Miwa standing directly behind the shrine, as its go-shintai, the object of worship, and thus lacks a main shrine building(Honden). The legend said that the soul of Okuninushi-no-kami(Saki-mitama and Kushimitama) changed its name into Omononushi-no-kami and was deified in the Mt.Miwa in eternity. Since then, the whole Mt. Miwa has been worshipped as the object mountain (Shintai-zan).
Yamanobe-no-michi is the oldest national road known in Japan and is mentioned in the Nihon Shoki. This road once linked the ancient cities of Asuka and Heijo, It extends from the foot of Mt. Kasuga to Tsubaichi ,known as the ancient market place ,in Sakurai City. Now the road has been improved as a walking course starting from Isonokami Shrine to Omiwa Shrine. Walkers can enjoy the views of beautiful scenery and ancient buildings along the way. There are several huge keyhole-shaped Kofun in the early Kofun Period along the road.
Himiko was a shaman queen of Yamataikoku in Wa (Japan). Early Chinese dynastic histories chronicle said the people of Wa dwell in the middle of the ocean on the mountainous islands southeast of the prefecture of Tai-fang. They formerly comprised more than one hundred communities. The country formerly had a man as ruler. For some seventy or eighty years after that ,there were disturbances and warfare. Thereupon the people agreed upon a woman, named Himiko, for their ruler.
Taima-dera is a Buddhist temple in Katsuragi City, Nara Prefecture, Japan. In 612, it was originally built in Katano, Old Kawachi Province, by the Imperial Prince Maroko, the brother of Prince Shotoku and the son of Emperor Yomei.. The temple was later moved to its present location in 681 by Taima Kunimi, the grandson of Prince Maroko to become their family temple.. Although the temple's main object of veneration is the Medicine Buddha, the most popular attraction for visitors is the Taima Mandala which is a mandala in Japanese Pure Land Buddhism. It was woven approximately around 763.
Kodai – ji is a Buddhit temple of Rinzai sect located in Yasakatorii-mae-sagaru ,Shimo-Kawaramachi , Higashiyama District,Kyoto City. This temple was built by Kita-no-Mandokoro to commemorate her husband’s spirit after his death. Kita-no-Mandokoro,Nene, was the wife of Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Since Tokugawa Ieyasu spared no expense in assisting with its construction, it was a grand temple during its early years. But, most of buildings were lost by fire. All that is left of the original temple are Kaizando Hall, the front gate, Kangetsudai,Kasatei and Shiguretei.
Jonangu is a Shinto shrine located in Nakajima Tobarikyu-cho Fushimi-ku Kyoto City,Japan. The shrine was built in 794 by Emperor Kanmu when Heiankyo was established as the nation's capital. Since then , this shrine have been worshipped by people as protectors of the nation. At the end of the Heian period, the Jonan Imperial Villa was built by the Ex-emperor Shirakawa around there. Many noblemen constructed magnificent buildings following his example around this area. Shirakawa ruled the government as a cloistered emperor at his villa. Jonangu was also deeply revered as the guardian deity of Shirakawa’s villa The district thus became the political and cultural centre.
Oji are the small shrines marking the way along the Kumano Kodo ,ancient pilgrimage route, stretching from Naniwa(Osaka) to Kumano Nachi Taisha on the Kii Peninsula. Oji ordinarily mean "Prince”. It is said Oji are the children of Okami of Nachi Taisha. When pilgrims come to oji, they often offer a prayer to the Kami. Pilgrims expect that the Kami will watch over them for a safe journey to Nachi Taisha. In practice, oji were places where pilgrims purchased necessary goods for journey and poor pilgrims could stay at free.
Japan Mint is an Incorporated Administrative Agency of the Japanese government. This agency has its Head office in Osaka,located Temma 1-chome, kita-ku, Osaka-shi.. "Cherry Blossom Viewing in Osaka" was opened from April 15th to 21st in its Cherry Blossom Lane. 348 trees and 126 varieties are blooming there this year.
Shitenno are the Buddhist deities who are believed to protect the four directions of the world. They are Tamon-ten( guarding the north), Zocho-ten (the south), Jikoku-ten ( the east) and Komoku-ten(the west). They entered Japan together with Buddhism and became so popular among Japanese people. Japanese people have built statues of Shi-Tenno to pray for mercy. Shitenno appear standing at the four corners of platforms where Nyorai rests and are shown standing on evil beasts to symbolize their roles as the protectors of the religion.
Hashihaka Kofun is located in Hashihaka ,Sakurai City, Nara Prefecture. It is believed to be built in the middle of the 3rd century. Hashihaka Kofun is 280 meters long and 30 meters high. There are 10 kofun in the area, which are called as the Makimuku Kofun Group. Bronze mirrors, iron swords, magatama are found in good condition in undisturbed tombs. According to the legend, the woman buried in Hashihaka was wife of the deity of Mt. Miwa and a priestess able to transmit the deity's words to the king. Because she offended the deity, she was killed and buried in Hashihaka However, today some scholars assume the buried person of Hashihaka kofun was the ancient Queen Himiko of Yamataikoku.
The main observation deck of the tower is at a height of 91 m. From the deck, visitors can enjoy a 360-degree panoramic view of Osaka. On the 5th floor, a wooden statue of the Billiken is enshrined as the God of Happiness. The Billiken was a charm doll created in 1908 by an American art teacher and illustrator, Ms. Florence Pretz of St. Louis, Missouri . One of her dolls came to Japan in about 1910. The doll was enshrined within Luna Park when it opened. But the statue of Billiken went missing when the park was closed in 1923. In 1979, a copy of Billiken, made from an old photograph, was placed inside the tower.
Tsutenkaku Tower is a well-known landmark of Osaka, Japan・ It is located in the Shinsekai district of Naniwa Ward. The tower, inspired by the Eiffel Tower in Paris ,was originally built in 1912. It was connected to the amusement park, Luna Park, by an aerial cable car. But the Japanese government dismantled the tower in 1943 and the iron in the tower was melted down and used for war material. , After the war, the second-generation tower was established in 1956.
Himeji Castle is a flatland-mountain Japanese castle located in Himeji City, Hyogo Prefecture,Japan. It was registered as the Japanese National Cultural Treasure by UNESCO World Heritage Site and a Japanese National Cultural Treasure in December, 1993. It is occasionally called “Shirasagijo” (White Heron Castle) because of its brilliant white exterior. There are about 1,000 cherry trees around Himeji Castle. They are usually in full bloom from the end of March to the beginning of April.
The Yamataka Jindai Zakura is one of the Three Great Cherry Trees in Japan. It is located in the precincts of Jishoji Temple of Nichiren Buddhism in Yamanashi Prefecture. Legend tells us that this Yamataka Jindai Cherry Tree was planted by Yamato Takeru-no-mikoto in the 3 century. Yamatotakeru was a Japanese legendary prince of the Yamato dynasty, son of Keiko of Yamato. It is said that the monk Nichiren prayed for the recovery of this weakened tree in 1274. Nichiren,also known as Rissho Daishi, was the founder of the Nichiren sect. It used to be a very tall tree but its main trunk was broken by a typhoon in 1959. The remaining main trunk reaches to 11 meters around its bottom. In 1921, this Cherry Tree was reserved as National Natural Monument by the government.
Jizo Cherry, located not far from Fall Cherry, is said to be a Daughter of Miharu Fall Cherry. A small shrine of a Buddhism figure Jizo is situated under the tree. This 400-year-old cherry tree is16 meters high. This cherry tree is the Koriyama City-designated natural monument.
In Japan, Buddha's Birthday, the birthday of the Prince Siddhartha Gautama , is celebrated on April 8. About 2,500 years ago, a prince of the Sakya Clan was born on April 8 at Lumbini Garden, located in present-day Nepal near the Indian border. The baby named Siddhartha was said to stand upon birth, walked seven steps and said, with his right hand raised toward heaven, "In heaven and on earth, I alone am honored." On this day, all temples do celebratory festivals called Hana-matsuri, meaning 'Flower Festival. At the service, people build a miniature hall called hanamido decorated with flowers, place the statue of an infant Buddha pointing to heaven and earth in its center, and pour ama-cha (sweet tea ) over the statue with a small ladle.
Keifuku Electric Railroad Co. Ltd. is a railroad company based in Kyoto Prefecture, Japan in operation since March 2, 1942. The Main Line connects Kyoto's city center and Arashiyama area in the western suburb. The Kitano Line is from Kitano Hakubaicho Station near Kitano Tenman-gu Shrine to Katabiranotsuji Station.
At least two people have been killed in a powerful earthquake that struck central Italy. The death toll from early Monday's strong quake in central Italy has climbed to 27, with some 40 others missing.
The death toll in the strong earthquake that hit central Italy has risen to 179, rescue services said on Tuesday.
Takizakura is one of The Three Great Cherry Trees of Japan located in Miharu, Town ,Fukushima Prefecture. Other two are “Usuzumi Zakura” in Gifu Prefecture and Yamataka Jindai Zakura in Yamanashi Prefecture. It is the only drooping cherry tree among The Three Great Cherry Trees. The Takizakura, declared as a national treasure of nature in 1922, is said to be more than 1,000 years old. The tree stands 19 meters tall, and the breadth of the branches reaches nearly 22 meters. The Takizakura blossoms in late April or early May.
North Korea appears to have launched a rocket,Tokyo said. South Korea and the US confirmed lift-off at 0230 GMT. The rocket appeared to have passed over Japan to the Pacific. Japan said it had not tried to intercept the rocket.
Satellite launched by North Korea did not make it to orbit, North American Aerospace Defense Command has said.
Mt. Yoshino in Yoshino Town, Nara Prefecture, is Japan's most famous cherry blossom spot.. Yoshino-yama is divided into four areas. These are the Shimo Senbon(the lower 1,000 cherry trees) at the base of the mountain, Naka Senbon(the middle 1,000) on the way, Kami Senbon(the upper 1,000) toward the top and Oku Senbon(the inner 1.000) in the precincts of the inner shrine at the top. For adherents of Shugendo, Yoshino has been a center of mountain worship for many centuries. The town is and was also a base of the Mount Omine pilgrimage trail. Yoshino also served various historical personalities as a refuge, including Emperor Go-Daigo. Go-Daigo escaped from the capital, Kyoto and set up the Southern Court among the mountains of Yoshino in the 14th century., beginning the Period of Northern and Southern Courts. Yoshino was designated as a cultural UNESO World Heritage Site in 2004, named the "Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range" as well as Mount Koya and Kumano.