Hokokuji Temple in Kamakaura is one of the few zen temples with a traditional garden in Kamakura, where the rocks, bamboo groves, zen garden, trees and plants are blended with the hills and natural background of the landscape. Water is considered purifying in Japan, hence the emphasis on cleanliness in everyday life. Water fountains such as these, known as tsukubai, are also beneficial to hear the trickling of falling water to soothe the nerves as well. A tsukubai is a small basin provided at Japanese Buddhist temples for visitors to purify themselves by the ritual washing of hands and rinsing of the mouth. Tsukubai are usually of stone, and are often provided with a small scoop, laid across the top, ready for use.
- ©John Lander
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