Not all learning is done within a classroom.
That’s the philosophy that many students have at Temple University Japan. When the city is your classroom, there is no limit to what you can learn. Keeping that in mind, a few of the study abroad students and one bridge program student braved the rains to learn about the religious culture (namely, visiting a few shrines).
Takeshita-dori in Harajuku was even more crowded than usual with umbrellas
Azumi performs harae, ritual water cleansing, before entering the shrine gate
Sahara follows suit
Meiji Jingu (Meiji Shrine), a very popular shrine for visitors, weddings, and the devout to come and pray.
Ruby and Azumi take a picture together in front of the shrine
This is ema, which can be purchased at the shrine. You buy the wooden plaque and write your hopes and dreams on it. I hope Richard’s wish comes true!
Nearby is Togo Shrine, which is a much smaller shrine dedicated to Marshal-Admiral Togo Heihachiro. His flag is presented all over the shrine grounds.
“Does it look okay?” Azumi, Marie, and Sahara check the pictures they took at the shrine
Jumped on a train to Atago to visit Atago Shrine and its famous, steep rock steps (very dangerous on a rainy day, so be careful!)
Since Atago Shrine is on a hill high above the city, it was the designated “fire-watching” spot when large fires were common. Thus, the shrine is dedicated to the shinto fire god, Ho-musubi.
Atago Shrine’s expansive koi pond
With mid-terms coming up in the next weeks, all of the students at TUJ are feeling the pressure, so this little getaway was a great stress-reliever. Good luck with exams, friends!