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Esoteric Japan: Feet and Tops

It is noticed that any journey becomes richer and more interesting, and the results of it have a greater impact on the subsequent everyday life, if you set for a trip among the rest of the goal, which are beyond the limits of natural human curiosity and striving for novelty. Most often this leads to the fact that your trip in some places becomes sacred, pilgrimage in nature.
Going on a trip to Japan this summer, my husband and I reflected on our route three such goals: to touch the roots of Reiki, climb Mount Fuji and live in an atmosphere of Zen Buddhism. Why is this? It is difficult to say, but it is worth noting that these plans did not appear together or immediately. Reiki is a method of treatment that came to the world from Japan, Dr. Mikao Usui opened it at the beginning of the 20th century, and at the end of the century Reiki traditions spread far beyond the borders of Japan, not only as one of the directions of alternative medicine, but also as a way of spiritual growth , a kind of philosophical element of the world.
Mount Fuji – an outstanding manifestation of the forces of nature – takes pride of place in the most ancient religion of Japan – Shinto, in which the number of deities is as unlimited as natural phenomena. Today, few Japanese are true Shintoists, most observe rituals of both Buddhism and Shintoism. Zen Buddhism, based on the power of reason and processes such as sudden insight, we just wanted to feel, being in his environment.
So it turned out: we visited many places and events traditionally visited by tourists in Japan, but the most vivid impressions were precisely what we called the esoteric part of the trip and this story only about it.
Place Usui
Japan. The grave of Mikao Usui on the same day after arriving in Tokyo – from there our route began and ended there – we begin the search for the grave of Mikao Usui, we have a photo of the monument and the name of the temple, near which it is located and some ideas about how to get there from the book of the master Reiki Ardzhava Peter. Coming out of the train, we immediately understand that finding the road using the “language to Kiev …” method and the description takes a lot of time, the GPS navigator comes to the rescue, into which we have already at home prudently entered the coordinates of the “Usui Place”. Twenty minutes walk and we find ourselves at the entrance to the Saihoji Buddhist temple, which is adjacent to a small cemetery. We begin the visual search from two sides at once and in a few moments we meet at the monument to the Master. Peace and tranquility around, a light breeze, the shine of the morning sun suddenly peeking out from behind the clouds, the rustling of the old cedar, the greatness and mysterious significance of each element of the memorial and, of course, the feeling of Reiki is an unforgettable experience for people who have been practicing Reiki for almost 20 years. According to the Buddhist tradition we wash the gravestone and immerse ourselves in meditation. We leave this place at the same time both touched and inspired. One of the most important travel goals achieved.

View of Mount Fuji from its top
Heading to the tourist information center, which is located in the skyscraper of the city of Tokyo, to find out the possibility and details of climbing Mount Fuji. Access to information in Japan is amazing. You can learn everything about everything with any degree of detail, free of charge to collect a whole bag of various maps, descriptions, manuals, and they will delight you with their thoughtfulness and friendliness when using. We draw a route, give the schedule of a regular bus, check the weather forecast in the Fuji area for tonight …. This forecast is the only thing that causes some fluctuations – they promise rain, but we have already gathered. A few hours later we get off the bus at the foot of Fujiyama, more precisely at the 5th station, located at an altitude of 2300 m, then go up only with legs. It is noticeably cooler here. We pull out warm clothes, shoes, sticks from our backpacks, equip ourselves, sit down on the track – and on the way, we should overcome almost 1500 m of height overnight. And Japanese meteorologists with a rainy forecast and we, with a premonition that the weather will be suitable, turned out to be right: in the distance in the rapidly darkening sky, lightning almost continuously flashes – there is a strong thunderstorm, but above us there is a starry sky, and this in itself is surprising, since July and August are indicated in the Japan guidebooks as the rainy season.
Japan. Mount FujiThe tradition of climbing Fuji is very strong in Japan, for followers of the Shinto religion it is a pilgrimage, a ritual of worship. This mountain – one of the symbols of Japan, a photo of a high-speed train on the background of Fuji with a snowy peak – perhaps perceived as a visiting card of the land of the rising sun. Most Japanese consider it their duty to climb Fuji at least once. Access to it is open only in July-August, so those foreign tourists who come during the flowering of cherry blossoms are not able to visit the highest point in Japan.

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