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Jizo

8 Comments

A woman passes by rows of small statues of "jizo," the guardian deity of children, at Zojoji Buddhist temple in Tokyo, on Thursday.

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8 Comments
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I passed by there almost everyday for the last 10 years and no one took my pic...

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there is a great book referencing this "jizo" called grotesque

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Interesting choice of phrase, "Guardian deity of children". He apparently didn't do much of a job guarding the children commemorated by these statues, most of whom were aborted, I'm led to believe.

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There's a temple in Kamakura(the name escapes me at the moment) that has hundreds and hundreds of these statues. I find them kind of strange and yet compelling at the same time.

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Jizo is supposed to be guarding the aborted children in the afterlife, thats why you often see women caring for these statues in temples...the statues serve a grief therapy purpose

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Jizo statues kind of creep me out.

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Jizo is not just there for aborted foetuses, but also for naturally miscarried ones.

I would guess that Jizo shrines came about through natural miscarriage and stillbirth. Adding artificial miscarriage i.e. abortion, is presumably a more recent phenomenon.

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I thought Jizou was traditionally the guardian of all children, but especially of those who died early (guardian of aborted children is more recent). Also thought he was the guardian of travelers (hence statues along highways).

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