Kuhonbutsu, or Joshin-ji Temple, was built on the ruins of what used to be Okusawa Castle. The temple grounds are enclosed by earthen mounds built when the castle was still standing, and the halls are built in an orderly fashion. The entire precincts of the temple, which belongs to the Jodo sect of Buddhism, are designed to resemble the Sukhavati, Pure Land of Ultimate Bliss.
And that's not all. According to the official website of Joshin-ji Temple, the number 36 is used throughout the temple grounds to correspond to the "36 Vows of Amitabha". The site of the temple grounds is 36,000 tsubo (about 118,800 square meters), and there are 36 round pillars in each of the three Buddhist halls, and 36 ken (about 65 meters) between the elegant hall and the main hall.
The detailed layout of the temple grounds is said to be almost the same as the layout depicted in the "Edo Meisho Zue" published in 1836. While I was thinking of the effort put into the temple, I suddenly thought. The number of vows that Amitabha Buddha made before his ascetic practice to become a Buddha must have been 48. I wonder where the 36 vows in the "36 Vows of Amitabha" listed on the website came from.
The Infinite Life Sutra, one of the sutras of Jodo Buddhism explains the vows of Amitabha. There are several different translations of the Infinite Life Sutra, each of which has a different number of true vows, some saying 48, some 24, and some 36. I don't know how many the real number is, but I find it strange that they are all multiples of 12.
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