Traditional Japanese architecture has three categories: shrines, temples, and houses (although castles, theatres, and schools can also be included). As for the sanctuaries, these have been sacred sites since time immemorial. In Japan, as in other civilizations, the act of worship has been part of life since ancient times, and the first forms of sanctuary architecture appeared at the end of the eighth and early ninth centuries. Then, when the influences of Buddhism and Confucianism began to affect the people of Japan, Japanese architectural styles began to change.
Temple: Another Member Of The List
The second category is the temples. Along with the introduction of Buddhism in Japan in the middle of the 6th century, temple architecture techniques come from Asia. Starting with Asukadera in Nara, temples were built in different parts of the country. In the years that followed, the doctrines and beliefs of prominent Buddhist sects influenced the construction of their temples, resulting in a wider variety of structural styles and forms.
It is given that in more than one point in history both religions – Shintoism and Buddhism – related symbolically, sharing rituals, locations, and architectural styles. It is often difficult to differentiate one from the other.
Can You Find The Origin Of The Japanese Shrines In The Mountains?
Unlike monotheistic religions, such as Christianity or Islamism, in Japan, there is a belief that “yaoyorozu-no-kami “(eight million gods) inhabit nature. Therefore, in ancient times, believes were the mountains, great trees, and rocks were gods. Hence, people prayed for them then. That was the origin of the sanctuaries.
The first sanctuaries found their design in a unique style that did not include the main building (London). Although it had a place for the worship of nature (harden). The sanctuary of Omiwa in Nara is an example of this type. Moreover, the Mount Miwa behind it revered as a deity.
More About Japanese Shrines
In the following pages, an original form of Japanese shrines was developed, in which the main shrine was regularly found. Representative examples are the Great Shrine of Sumiyoshi (prototype of the Kuniyoshi style), the Great Shrine of Izumo (Taisha style) and the Shrine of Ise (shinai style).
In the sixth century, Buddhism arrived in Japan and became a significant national religion. Even since ancient times, Japan manifested an admiration for new things and the adoption of foreign ideas. According to the Buddhist teachings, images of Shinto got their production quickly. Also, the graceful, wavy curves of the roofs of the Buddhist temples find its use used for the sanctuaries.
Elements In The Japanese Architecture Of The Temples
The history of the Japanese architecture of the temple began with the expansion of Buddhism at the beginning of the 7th century. This had nothing to do with aspects of faith, but also with political influences since Buddhism favored an important hierarchical and centralized structure, favorable to the interests of emperors.
Until the beginning of the Edo period (1603-1867), nails finds its use in Japanese temples. While adopting Asian architectural patterns, the Japanese included special elements in a country especially affected by earthquakes. The kimono, support of beams and pillars finds its use to support the eaves of the roofs of the pagodas.
Thanks to a complex organization of large support block with a support arm inserted in it. As the kimono was able to support large ceilings and has endured the ravages of time very well.