Where the cuckoo’s voice
Glided into the sea
Shooting across the sky
I found an island.
In walking across a stretch of land called Amanohoshidate, I found this poem of Basho inscribed in a rock. It is one of my favorite haikus. The shape of the land is similar to the shape of a dragon.
Down below an eagle searching for food in Ine town
Exhausted, I sought
A country inn, but found
Wisteria in bloom.
In the Botanical garden of the Kasuga Shrine in Nara ( old Japanese capital) the visitors admire the abandunt blossoms of many kinds of wisteria.
In an old temple
Deep in Mount Koya
I listen to rain drops
Falling from a cedar tree.
This is the walkway to the mausoleum of Kukai. It is said that he is not dead but in eternal meditation. The walkway to the mausoleum is lined with many centuries old cedar trees. 200 000 people are buried in this sacred place.
In the evening of a thousand peaks, I close my eyes.
Among humans, myriad of thoughts are trivial.
Serenely, I sit on my mat.
In solitude, I face an open window.
The incense has burnt out and a dark night is long.
Dew is thick; my robe is thin.
Emerging from Samadhi, I walk in the garden.
The moon has risen over the highest peak.
Blooming wisteria, azalea and dogwood tree ( white blossoms) beside a water fountain in a small temple on my way back to Ryozenji, temple 1. With that, I closed the circle, a circle which has no beginning nor end.
I want to thank you all for walking with me on this pilgrimage. It was a truly amazing experience. The kindness, generosity and warmhearteness of the Japanese people I met on the way was increadible. The beauty of the nature was often beyond words. I hope the photos could convey a little bit what I felt. In deep gratitude for the way, Traude.
Foot and earth touch
Bright sunflowers fill our eyes
In the distance, thunder roars.
Sweat trickles down our cheeks,
Fully entering the world of birth and
Our tears nourish all beings.
Transcending the world of birth and
Empty footprints going nowhere.
Thich Nhat Hanh
Arriving at Okuboji, temple 88. The path to it required some rock climbing and a steep descend but was increadible beautiful.
Path down in the direction of Ryozenji, temple 1, where I started my journey.
Still alive I am
At the end of a long dream
On my journey,
Fall of an autumn day.
In no other country than in Japan I felt the beauty of impermanence as strongly – Everything changes constantly. This is one of many abandoned houses in Shikoku in Sanuki City near Shidoji, temple 86.