Prince Shōtoku is known in the history of Japan as the father of Japanese Buddhism. He established the Shitennoji Temple from Osaka, which is known as the oldest officially administered temple in Japan.
Prince Shōtoku is also the author of the Seventeen-Article Constitution, a code established in 604, comprising principles for the ruling class. An amazing fact is that this law remained in effect until 1890, for almost 1300 years!
To honor him and his constitution, a hall was built in 1992 at the Narita-san Shinshō-ji Temple, the Shotoku-taishi-do Hall (this is the most recent building from the complex).
As you can see, the Shotoku-taishi-do is an octagonal building, a small architectural jewel designed to evoke a specific principle from Prince Shōtoku’s Constitution, about the value of harmony. The article begins like this: “Harmony is to be cherished, and opposition for opposition’s sake must be avoided as a matter of principle…”
Do you feel the parallel between the building and the Prince’s article?
Yesterday’s Japan Photo: