Autumn in Kyoto – Day 7 – part 1 京の秋

Obakusan Mapukuji Temple 黄檗山萬福寺, Uji City 宇治市

They said a cold front would push through the region during the day, it would turn windy, colder but brighter . I headed to Uji City to face the cold front. I couldn’t wait to see some sun.

Mampukuji is the head temple of the Obaku sect of Zen Buddhism in Japan, and the teaching monastery for the sect’s student monks. The founder of this temple was a Chinese Zen Master, Ingen (隱元禅師, 1592-1673). He was invited to come to Japan from Fujian province, China,  to build this temple. Besides of Zen Buddhism, this temple is famous  for two cultural pursuits. One is their fucha ryori , Chinese style vegetarian cooking, and the other is senchado (煎茶道), a type of tea ceremony which uses sencha (煎茶) and gyokuro (玉露) instead of matcha (抹茶) for making tea (or the Chinese way rather than the Japanese way).  In China,  Fujian Province is famous for their production of high end tea such as oolong, and local folks are well known for their way of steeping tea with small clay pots.  If you are interested in learning more about this temple, check this link:  www.obakusan.or.jp

下雨天拍紅葉確實頗有難度,但如果有較明朗的天色, 濕潤的葉子也會呈現漂亮的色相, 只是星期天的天氣實在太灰喑了,令人失望。前一晚的天氣報告說今天有冷峰過境, 除了會轉凉和大風, 還會有陽光。心裡對第七天的行程有所祈待。

萬福寺是一所非常特別的寺院。我不是建築師, 但進入寺院後不難感覺其格局跟其他日式寺院完全不一樣, 就是很中國式的。由於行前沒看过詳細資料,不知道有此中式寺院,及後参觀寺內的文物展,始知萬福寺是由原籍福建的隱元禪師(1592-1673)於明代東渡扶桑所創辦的。萬福寺有两項著名的文化特式, 其一為普茶料理,其二為煎茶道。我两樣都沒有試過, 因為單槍匹馬,乃不受歡迎行列 。原來最少三人始能成席,所以欲試無門。根據資料,前者乃中式齋菜之日式呈現,後者乃中式泡茶的日式呈現。有興趣的朋友, 請按: www.obakusan.or.jp (京の秋七之一的中文部份是2009年10月23日補寫的。差不多整整一年了,啊…又是秋涼時節。)

Obakusan Mamoukuji

Obakusan Mampukuji Temple in Uji

The Sanmon 山門,

Obakusan Mampukuji Temple in Uji. What carved on the whitish stone in front of the gate is that ” no alcohol is allowed beyond this gate”. However, in modern Japan, three groups of people are said to have consumed more alcohol than the others, they are teachers, policemen and …. (?). 寺前石柱刻有”不許濁洒入山門”, 但據說日夲嗜酒三族是教師、警察和…..(?), 非常有趣。

affa

I was so surprised to find that this temple was “very Chinese”, in terms of layout and architectural style.  You don’t normally see couplets (对联) in Japanese temples. In this temple, they are everywhere.  Toshodaiji Temple in Nara may be connected to Tang Dynasty (1000 years ago), but Mampukuji Temple is  definitely connected to Ming Dynasty  (~400 years ago). 日夲寺院罕見對聯, 此寺中倒是到處可見。

Let's get some tea. 喫茶去. Those who know what zen means should understand the meaning of these 3 Chinese characters.

Let’s get some tea. 喫茶去. This is a very  famous scripture (偈) in Zen Buddhism. 第一次在日夲看到此偈, 好像中國人才比較喜歡用此偈。

sfffs

Saturated!  美極了!

ghghgh

It is a bit embarrassing to admit that  I don’t recognize these characters written in free-style. You know what, I’ll look at them daily, I believe that one day I’ll be “enlightened” to find out. 說起來有點汗颜, 東看西看, 橫看直看,竟然看不出這三個字是甚麼字。尚祈高明見教。

四大金剛之一

One of the Four Heavenly Kings, the guardians of the four directions, in Chinese costume. You don’t see this very often in Japan.    四大天王之一, 服裝像是明式吧。

hkhhk

The stone lantern is Japanese. 這石燈籠倒是很日夲。

yuyuu

 lit. Tea Zen. Zen Buddhism has a lot to do with tea drinking.茶禅, 茶室上的扁額。

ioio

This huge bell must have weighted a ton, standing directly under it chilled my backbone. 迥廊上掛着大鐘, 站在其下, 心裡毛毛的。

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

The sun was struggling hard to show its face. The first temple was nice, but not much of red maple (that’s why there were not a lot of visitors).  At  noon time, I began to walk to the next temple, through narrow alleys. That was a real residential neighborhood. No restaurants, no convenient stores, no nothing. At the first fifteen minutes, I found it very interesting, even the fire hydrant cover appeared to be very artistic.  However, after that, I was tired, I was bored, I was cold and I was feeling hungry.  What made it worse was the alley was not  “running according to the map” ! Moreover,  the wind began to pick up, the sky became darker and finally a sprinkle of shower. I know, you are right, that’s exactly what I needed.  I struggled to cover my cameras, and at the same time, I spared an eye to look for  a cab.  Just at that moment, I saw a sign, an arrow pointing to 三室户寺 Mimurotoji, Haleluya!!

在萬福寺內参觀完文物展及”伽藍”後,時近正午,肌腸轆轆,下午還得趕幾個點,只好拿出最後的两小包M&M, 邊走邊吃。來到山門前, 發現牆頭有一叢極漂亮的紅葉,遂把M&M往腰間一塞,不停的拍。拍啊拍啊,不覺已離開萬福寺,在民居的巷子往宇治川走去。由萬福寺到三室户寺的距離颇遠,肚子真的是有點餓了,於是伸手至”腰間”去掏那两包M&M,但把口袋翻遍都找不着,想是掉了。這地區完全是民區,連一間7-11都沒有。就在此時,刮起風來,天也黑了,還開始下着小雨。真的屋漏更兼逢夜雨,我一面忙着把相機塞進背包,一面到處張望,希望能找到一輛計程車。就在這當兒,我看到一牌子,上有一箭咀,寫着三室户寺。

Japanese counterpart of Fire Hydrant.

Japanese counterpart of Fire Hydrant. 這裡的消火栓是埋在地下的, 有意思。

I found some interesting object walking in those narrow alleys.

I found some interesting objects walking in those narrow alleys. This is one of them.  這個房子實在太漂亮了,令人羨慕。

三室户寺 Mimurotoji Temple

This temple was first built in …………let’s skip this part.  When I walked in this temple, I realized that I hadn’t done my homework well. This temple is a gem!  I don’t recall reading anything that has recommended this temple. I thought I did a detailed search for good locations for lotus two years ago before I went to Kyoto and Osaka for lotus and water lilies, obviously I missed this one. After this trip, I came home and found that Mimurotoji Temple is  really a gem for hydrangea and lotus (pictures on line).

也不知為什麽,我並沒有查到很多有関三室户寺的資料,更遑論他們著名的繡球花和蓮花。尤幸歪打正着,他們的紅葉也相當好,下一回七月來看他們的蓮花。

A group of pilgrims at the entrance of mimuroji Temple

A group of pilgrims at the entrance of Mimurotoji Temple. 三室户寺没有宏偉的山門,但火紅的楓葉加上朝聖者的背影另有一番  味。

Beautiful garden

Beautiful garden, along the ditch, there are a lot hydrangea. 一叢一叢的是繡球花。

Dieties

Cute!  路邊的小神像,套上毛織帽子,可愛得很。

affaf

The tree trunks offer a wonderful contrast to the red maple leaves. The color, the texture, the orientation.  This one is definitely not a dazzling one but one that its taste lasts a long time. 特他把一組褐色樹幹放在右邊,強調質感和顏色的對比。

bnbn

Finally, the sun. 雖然山後仍然烏雲密佈,太陽突然露了臉。

asa

Note the dark sky in the background, the sun barely came through a small window for a few minutes.  銀杏的葉子在陽光的照耀下金光閃閃。

ioioi

I may be able to do something about this picture with photoshop.

ghghgh

To be perfectly honest, my skill level was not good enough to capture the true beauty of that moment.

rtrtr

The Main Hall

Thank you for the light.

Thanks a million for the spotlight!!這陽光仿似舞台的燈光。

This is my favorite.

This was one of my ideas of taking foliage pictures. At first, I thought it was easy if there was a body of water, but it was much harder than anticipated. The light, the red color and the ripples (I waited 20 minutes for these ripples, I do know how to create some, but dared not to do so), all elements have to line up properly. 我十分喜歡這方式去拍紅葉,只是要陽光和漣漪配合,尤其是後者,不容易呢。

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