Sanmon, Chion-in

A sanmon is the most important gate for a Japanese Buddhist temple, and is part of the five to seven halls which form the core of these temples. The role it fulfills is largely symbolic (there are neither fences nor doors), and is meant to cleanse and prepare pilgrims who step through the gate to reach the main hall. The sanmon of Chion-in, standing at around 25 meters, is one of the largest wooden gates in Japan and considered a national treasure.


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