immortal wishes:
labor and transcendence
on a Japanese sacred mountain

Ellen Schattschneider

Duke University Press (2003)




(See Chapter Two, "Between Worlds: Akakura's Architecture of Potential Transformation," esp. pp. 58-65, 77-83)

I. Images In the Shinden (Inner Sanctuary): 

Praying to Kobo Daishi.

This votive painting displays the shrine founder on the left, kneeling in prayer to Kobo  Daishi, a founding figure of Japanese esoteric Buddhism, standing on the right. Above them, facing each other with grotesque smiles,   two dragons emerge out of swirling clouds, each with one clawed hand extending forward. In the background, the outline of three-peaked Akakura is visible. In the center, in the middle  foreground, stands a tree decorated with shide (white paper strips in a zigzag pattern).

Detail of Right side of painting (shows Kobo Daishi, with dragon above):

Previous image

(dragons above waterfall)

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(Old Akakura Daigongen)

Return to Shrine Paintings (Start)





. Website developed by Ellen Schattschneider (Brandeis University)