Kyoto, Japan's cultural queen
Trip Start Mar 20, 2009
183Trip End Jul 15, 2010
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The trick here is to select a few good temples and buildings unless you want to spend months visiting them all. Temples reveal an interesting mix of Confucius and Buddhist heritage mixed with Japan Shinto religion (Shinto = 'Way of the Gods'), a collection of indigenous rituals related to rice production. The Shinto religion consists of thousands of deities including the goddess of the sun to whom the imperial family is said to trace its ancestry.
I saw a few Geishas, women of infinite grace and refinement who entertain (singing, dancing, etc.) gentlemen for amounts of about $3,000. There are about 100 of them in Kyoto.
The lotus flower represents fortune in Buddhism. It grows in muddy water, and it is this environment that gives the flower its meaning: rising and blooming above the murk to achieve enlightenment. All very thoughtful.
Pursuing my journey to the south, it took me only 3 hours to cover the 750km from Kyoto to Fukuoka with the 'Shinkansen Bullet train'!