Kiwi Particle Physicist

May 23, 2006

Kamakura

I'm still at the ILC school. Yesterday we only had morning classes, and then after lunch we went into nearby Kamakura to see the sites.

Kamakura was the home of the Minamoto shoguns during the period of the Kamakura shogunate from 1185 to 1333. It was towards the end of this period that the Mongols launched two invasions under Kublai Khan in 1274 and 1281, both of which were largely wiped out by kamikaze (typhoons.) However, the financial strain from supporting the military during this time helped weaken the regime. It was eventually overthrown after Kamakura’s most powerful general, Ashikaga Takauji, sided with the emperor to remove the ruling clan. He then declared himself the first shogun of the new Muromachi shogunate, which was based in Kyoto.

First we went to Kotokuin, to see the statue of the Amida Buddha, and then we headed on to Hachiman-gu, which was built in its present location in 1191. The photos below show prayers written out by people who visited the shrine, including one by Michael from Taiwan, who is studying with me here at the ILC school.




It was a good break from all the study, but we still had homework to do from the morning lectures, so we were all sitting in the lobby studying until after midnight again.

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