On the eastern side of the Meguro River, sits the Daienji Temple. It has the dubious honour of being where the Great Meiwa Fire of 1772 sparked to life. The Meiwa blaze is the second of the three “great” fires of Edo. It resulted in thousands of deaths and utter destruction to a huge percentage of the city.
To honour the dead and perhaps by way of atonement, the temple commissioned 520 stone statues, each individually carved with a different expression, to be placed within its grounds.
At the entrance of the temple, there is a tall Buddha sculpture and 500 small stone statues depicting the Gohyaku Rakan or followers of Buddha in the background. Right in the middle of the statues is a small pond, adding to the serenity of the temple. Standing in between the gate and the statues are small Jizo figures who act as guardians of children.
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