This morning we traveled to the Saga/Arashiyma bamboo forest with beautiful tall bamboo rustling in the breeze. Lots of different green colours. Strong rickshaw drivers seen through the forest of green, pulling tourists through the bamboo. We see a river meandering down a deep gorge with a colourful temple up the hillside. A lovely morning.

Afternoon visit to Daisen-in Zen Buddhist Temple Garden with guided tour. Beautiful rock and raked gravel garden with small pines and maples. ( No Photos Allowed) We learn that the raked gravel symbolizes rivers of water moving out to the sea. (The river of Enlightenment). Near the beginning of the river path there are many more rocks, signifying the bumpy road of life in one’s early years with many different paths. Then fewer rocks as one ages until the sea is reached.

We meet the head monk who speaks Italian! He looks much younger than his 90 years. Many of the sayings seen in the temple were written by him. The Zen Buddhist beliefs are live in the moment, be patient, be humble, hold no anger, be peaceful/kind, watch your speech. Live in the now!! We end the visit with a cinnamon covered candy and fresh matcha tea whisked up for us and served in a bowl.

We finish out the day with a walk on the Path of Philosophy, a winding stroll along a tree lined canal. Beautiful walk – it must be gorgeous in cherry blossom season and autumn. We veer off to see Honen-in temple, but it is closed. We do see a mossy garden at the entrance.

Nanzenji Temple is still open. It is for the Rinzai sect of Zen. There is a very large gate made of dark wood. There are many structures in this temple complex. A large brick aqueduct is seen, complete with Roman Arches.

It is getting dark so our visit is cut short, back to the Subway and our hotel.

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