Experience a rebirth beyond the cave at the mysterious temple on the rock wall
Natadera Temple which is located in the caves and caverns on a high rock wall has come to be revered as an ancient sacred ground. It is believed that its worship originated from the Jomon Era (14,000 BC-several centuries before the birth of Christ). The cave was believed to be “The Mother’s Womb” in which people entered to wash away their sins and then come out reborn. In the year 717, the Buddhist priest Taicho carved out the image of the Thousand-Armed Kannon which had appeared in his dreams and enshrined it in this cave which supposedly was the origin for Natadera. Even now, the view of life regarding “Rinne Tensho” (the endless cycle of life, death and rebirth) and the religious outlook believed by the ancients have continued to be cherished, and it is at the honden main hall where you can experience “The Mother’s Womb”.
The interior of the “Ideal Paradise” which enlivens a natural beauty
Highlights of Natadera Temple are the distinctive strangely-shaped rocks and the landscape carved out of the rising topography. The temple was constructed based on the idea of the Ideal Paradise appearing like a world surrounded by simple yet beautiful Mother Nature. As a result, there is plenty of beauty which is in breathtaking harmony with nature including the garden. Within the wide temple grounds, a mystical scene has been created with features such as the Kigan-Yusenkyo rock wall overlooking a large pond, the Daihikaku main shrine with its lovely carvings, the main hall where you can enter “The Mother’s Womb”, the bright vermilion Fugetsu Bridge and the Three-Story Pagoda. The highlight is the view from Chinju-do Hall. The view from there is known to be the best on the temple grounds for being able to see Kigan-Yusenkyo with its flora all throughout the four seasons. Other sites include the garden for special viewing (separate admission) and the Kuri Shoin which was built in 1637 which are precious places that have been designated nationally as Important Cultural Properties and as Places of Scenic Beauty. These are places that you will want to visit especially.