NIPPON Kichi - 日本吉

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木之本地蔵院 Kinomotojizoin Kinomoto Jizōin Temple

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Kinamoto Jizōin Temple lies within huge grounds in the center of Kinamoto town, in Ika, Shiga prefecture. It is famous as a temple where people can pray for long-life and cures for eye diseases.

The temple was founded by the priest Soren who, legend has it, found a statue of Jizō in Osaka Bay and venerated it under a willow tree. In fact, the name 'Kinomoto' derives from the story that the Jizō was worshiped under such a tree.

The wooden Jizō statue is 162 cm high with an ulna between its eyebrows. There are two statues beside it: Enma (Lord of Death) and Gushoujin (Enma's Aide). The statues were all designated as important cultural assets in 1899.

There are other important treasures in the temple, including an astonishing 6m-high statue of Jizō, one of the largest in Japan. From ancient times, it is believed that there lives at the temple a frog that answers certain human wishes. For this reason, many artificial frogs have been laid by supplicants beneath the Jizō sculpture.
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