This Binzuru is a wooden sculpture dating back to the 18th century. Binzuru is said to have excelled in the mastery of occult powers and it is commonly believed in Japan that who-ever rubs his hand on a part of the sculpture of Binzuru and then rubs that same part of his/her body as well, his ailment in this part of the body will disappear.
Just as huge gothic cathedrals mark the power of the church in medieval Europe, so too does the Todaiji Temple, one of the world's largest wooden building enclosing the world's largest bronze sculpture, mark the ascendancy of Buddhism in Nara-era Japan. Constructed in the 8th century, the site has been ravaged by fires and earthquakes, so very little of the temple is original, the the buddha itself has survived (without its gold leaf). Both the building and the buddha are sites to behold!
While this is one place where you won't see any deer, the Todaiji Temple (like the rest of Nara) is not without its little fun quirks. One of the columns in back of the buddha has a tunnel cut through its base, allowing children to crawl through it (and sometimes small adults). So, while the kids are occupied, you can contemplate the buddha, its massive size and its beauty as a work of art. You can gaze at the structure's architecture and study the 1:50 scale model of the original temple grounds. And you can walk around the grounds. This is a great place!
Todaiji was constructed in 752 as the main temple of all japanese Buddhist temples. Soon its importance increased that much, that the capital was moved from Nara to Nagaoka in 784 in order to lower its political influence.
Todaiji hosts Japan's largest Buddha statue and is also the world's largest wooden building,although the present reconstruction of 1692 is only two thirds of the original size.
Nara is located less than one hour from Kyoto and Osaka. Due to its past as the first permanent capital of Japan, it hosts many historic treasures, including some of Japan's oldest Buddhist temples.
The big Buddha Statue "Daibutsu"is one of the most revered statues in Japan.
Todaiji or "the Great Eastern Temple" is said to be the largest wooden building on earth and it is truly very big. It's one of the main attractions so you must go and see for yourself!
The main hall the "Daibutsu-den" is the home of a huge bronze buddha statue but there are also other statues, like two bodhi-satvas and four guardian statues. Outside, on the porch there's another, smaller, buddha statue, a wooden one, with healing powers. You should rub the knee of this buddha asking for help and then take the healing you received to the spot that's troubeling you. Worked for my aching knee, at least for the rest of the day...
This is a huge buddha statue the Daibutsu, in fact, it's Japan's largest. It has suffered hardships during its long history: the head fell off in an earthquake and the hand melted in a fire. If you look closely, you note there's a slight difference in the colour of the renewed parts.
Nara's most famous temple was founded in 728 AD by the Emperor Shoumu. Visitors enter through the impressive Nandai-mon (Southern Gate) guarded by two huge and scary looking gods. Beyond is the massive Daibutsu-den (Great Buddha Hall) said to be the largest wooden building in the world.
Inside is another record-breaker - the largest bronze statue in Japan. The Buddha is a whopping 15 metres high. The statue was completed in 752 when the eyes were painted in at a ceremony attended by dignitaries from as far afield as China and India.
Another must see sight. The temple is known as the Todai-ji. The building which houses the Giant Buddha (see picture 2), is known as the Daibutsu Den. The Daibutsu Den is designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Inside it sits a 15m high Buddha. Impressive!
The Great Buddha contained within the Diabutsu-den is one of the largest bronze figures in the world and originally cast in 746. The present statue, recast in the Edo period, stands at over 16m high and consists of 437 tonnes of bronze and 130 kg of gold. Over the centuries, the statue took quite a beating from earthquakes and fires, losing its head a couple of times.
The Todai-ji temple, with its Diabutsu-den Hall and enormous bronze Buddha, is Nara's main attraction. As you approach the temple, you will have to walk through an enormous gate, the Nandai-mon containing 2 fierce-looking Nio guardians. The Daibutsu-den is the largest wooden building in the world. The Diabutsu (Great Buddha) contained within is one of the largest bronze figures in the world and was originally cast in 746. The present statue stands just over 16m high and contains 437 tonnes of bronze and 130 kg of gold.
If you are ever in Nara, try your best to get to Todai-ji Temple! It is the largest wooden structure in the world and houses a colossal Buddha statue. There are also statues of other gods placed in certain areas around the Buddha. In one pillar of the structure, there is part of it cut out. Children crawl through it for fun (and of course, pictures!) so if you are taking a child, be sure to check that out. What it is is a direct size comparison... The "crawl space" is the exact size of one of the Buddha statue's nostrils! Also, for size reference, your ticket has measurements of certain parts of the statue. Gift shops are in the Temple as well as on your way out, so be sure to bring a good amount of yen! You will definitely want to remember this well.
The main hall of Todaiji Temple houses the Diahutsu and is known as the world's largest wooden structure. There is a shrine here that's dedicated to animals and it is here that you'll find Nara park, or better known as Deer Park.
Deers roam freely here and are friendly when they know you have a treat for them. But watch out, they can get aggressive if they smell food and you aren't sharing!
Spend some time here as the architecture of this place is magnificent. Please check travelogue for more pix.
Entrance fee : US$4.24 per person
When you are in Nara, one of the most popular places to visit is Todaiji. This temple is the largest wooden temple in the whole world and houses Japan's largest Buddha statue. The sheer size of the statue is so overwhelming and it gives you a crick in the neck just by looking at it. So don't look at it for too long, hehe.
Inside the Todaiji (temple), there is a huge pillar with a hole in the base. If a person can squeeze his/her way through the hole, he/she will be granted eternal happiness. Or so they say. I didn't try it, but my classmate did. Eventually, the others had to pull him out because he was stuck :P
Todaiji is my favourite temple in all of Japan (so far) because of the enormous and striking Buddha that is the centrepiece of the temple. There are bigger things in the world, even bigger Buddhas, but this one carries a presence greater than mass and volume alone. Take your time here to inspect the details of the statues, and as you circle around be sure to look for the support pillar with the hole in it. Apparently, if you manage to wiggle through the hole you'll achieve enlightenment in this spin of the dharma wheel. I'm still waiting, but I'm only in my 30s. The hole is bigger than it looks--I'm 6 ft./183cm tall and weigh 180lbs./80 kg and I fit through without much wriggling.