The Shoju-in Buddhist temple in the city of Ujitawara, Kyoto prefecture in Japan, was once known only for its Furin Matsuri wind chime festival, which the temple hosts every summer. But a recent architectural addition has created a surge in the temple’s popularity, especially among young Japanese women.
Shoju-in houses what has become one of Japan’s most popular windows: a heart-shaped opening that overlooks the temple grounds in the newly built reception hall. Since the feature was featured on social media as ‘the window that invites happiness’, traffic to the temple has more than doubled, with some 20,000 visitors making the trip to see the window over the year. last.
The boar is traditionally associated with determination and honesty, which is reflected in the way a boar charges at its target without being distracted. It was a popular symbol for the samurai class, and over time it became associated with the warding off of misfortune and good fortune.
And the window indeed invited fortune to Shoju-in Temple. The resident monks are surprised but happy at the growing popularity of their house. As Daikan Kunomura, the termple’s assistant priest, says: “The window gave us an unexpected result. I guess divine direction brought us here. (Mainichi)
When the reception hall, used for various functions such as tea ceremonies, was added, one of the carpenters suggested adding the inome west-facing wall window. After the hall was completed in 2015, visitors quickly noticed the heart-shaped opening, sharing their photos on social media and sparking a whole new influx of visitors.
However, the heart-shaped window is not the only new feature of the temple that attracts attention. Crowning the chamber, the hall’s so-called “flower ceiling” features 160 decorative paintings of Japanese flowers and landscapes created by around 100 artists and art students, which can be admired lying on the traditional floor of the room. tatami carpet.
Heart-shaped window wooing visitors to the Buddhist temple in Kyoto (Mainichi)
Feel the love of Japan’s traditional “Boar’s Eye” Inome symbol (Spoon & Tamago)
The heart-shaped “window of Inome” that invites happiness (Japanese Airlines)