Yesterday's image of Jizo-san led me back to an old issue: whether I should provide you some background on the images or not. (Any thoughts or preferences?) Well, today I'll be more forthcoming and give a short context for this photo:
Now a temple of the Soto school (曹洞宗) of Japanese Zen Buddhism, this was originally built in 1641 as the hermitage retreat of Ishikawa Jozan (石川丈山), a famous poet and scholar of the Chinese classics. Hence the name Shisendo (詩仙堂), which translates as "Hall of the Immortal Poets," and inside hang stylized portraits Ishikawa commissioned of over 30 great poets of ancient China whom he and other Japanese literatti so greatly admired. In addition to his writing, he also designed the garden and enjoyed the beauty of his hermitage for many years until his death in 1672.