Sensoji Temple, Asakuza (Tokyo)

I came across many temples while moving around in Tokyo. Well, Japan is home to lot of temples. Sensoji Temple in Tokyo’s Asakuza district is considered to be one of the oldest temples in Japan. Sensoji Temple is one of the most famous spots in Tokyo and is dedicated to Goddess Kannon, the Buddhist goddess of mercy. Coming out of subway station, one has to cross a long, street market to reach out the entrance.
Entrance to the temple is highlighted by the Kaminari-mon Gate, its 3.3-meter-high red paper lantern with inscription "Thunder Gate". For convenience I assumed the entrance as the Thunder Gate. Entrance to the inner temple goes via another gate, HOZOMON Gate, in local language Treasure Gate. This 2 storey gate is made of fireproof material, was lastly built in 1964.

At 5:00 PM in the evening temple was pretty crowded, no doubt this is one of the most popular spot in Tokyo. From the entrance, this is the beautiful Sensoji Temple, main shrine.

Just before the main shrine, saw many people taking the holy smoke of the incense sticks with their hands and applying to the eyes, face and a few people were applying to other body parts. Faith is also a healer which can cure ailments which no medicine can. Rightly said "Science comes so far and then God comes along".
People praying inside the main hall.

And at the right-hand side there is 5 storied Pagoda. Check out the view.

Inspiration for building Pagodas for keeping sacred relics come from India. The top most story of Pagoda keeps Buddha’s ashes relic, which was donated by a temple in Sri Lanka.
In the compound of the temple there are fortune telling doves, by card picking. Doves are considered to be messengers of Sensoji temple. While walking around in the premises, at one side of the temple found this beautiful statues of 2 Buddhas sitting side by side.
While coming out temple do spend some time walking around in the Nakamise-dōri, the street selling souvenirs, snacks, handicraft items, traditional masks, wood toys, traditional dresses (kimonos) and other items.

To summarise this street: "Good place, great atmosphere to experience Japan culture, Japanese food and buying small gifts as well". There are lot of shops, be careful some of these are protected by Ninjas:

If you get tired by walking around, you may like to enjoy the hand pulled rickshaw ride:
Sensoji Temple was built around 7th century, most of it was destroyed during the 2nd World War. Subsequently it was rebuilt in all original glory. Needs to appreciate resiliency of the Japanese people and love for their culture and heritage. Asakuza district is the centre of, you can say downtown Tokyo and provides a glimpse into the past times and cultural heritage of Tokyo. 

While writing this post and recalling the visit; I came across temple, incense sticks, people praying to Gods and market selling local crafts. Doesn't it sound similar to India? Of course Yes and Why not? Buddhism originated from India after all. I again discovered my India in Tokyo. 
Keep exploring Guys.

Gaurav Verma

A passionate Traveler who wants to see the whole world before hanging his boots. Always ready to explore offbeat and hidden spots. MBA + Engineer from Ivy league colleges, Gaurav is much sought after for his choice of lifestyle activities and Brand promotional campaigns.

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