We arrived in the heat of the summer, the sound of cicadas adding to the lull of the day’s end.
The train pulled into an empty station, and we found the lack of employee personal unusual. Almost eerie. There were more spiders hanging around than passengers aboard.

To fight the setting sun, we ran. With a slight sense of direction, our feet carried us up hill after hill, passing statues and temple faces. We turned and ran up a path that took us us deeper into a wild bamboo forest, until the path stopped and we hadn’t found the giant. Desperate to see him before the sun set, we endured aching legs and sweaty skin. We had to be close.

Down a hallway we continued, unwilling to catch our breath. A left turn, a right angle, some more stairs and then – there he was.


As if he was waiting for us this whole time.
This was where a giant slumbers. On its side, surrounded by hundreds of miniature warriors – each one with a different face and posture. Some faces sneered, others seemed welcoming.

Tickling the feet of Buddha felt like a calling. As if Buddha was laying on his side to invite the touch.

When you are left a place all to your own, something magical happens. Time bends around you, and you are left alone to absorb in your own headspace. The lack of humans brings alive the statues of the temple. Perhaps we are never as alone as we may think. There exists energies to be felt.

You can find this sleeping Buddha at the Nanzoin Temple in the Fukuoka Prefecture of Japan. That’s a 5 hour bullet train ride South from Tokyo. The temple is free to enter. Open all the time, but light is limited once the sun sets. No one really stays after dark.


Images taken with a Leica SL.