October 12th Thursday
The day was free time for the group today. Some would go over to Honmon-ji were more special ceremonies were taking place. Others would head out for shopping in Tokyo and still others would just relax. After ten days in Japan and lots of activity relaxing sounded good.
Some of the members visiting the Nichiren Shu Shumbin (newspaper). They publish many different books and articles for Nichiren Shu including the English Lotus Sutra by Murano.
The food vendors setting up for tonights celebration.
One of many posters around Tokyo advertising the celebration tonight at Honmon-Ji
arriving at the Ikegami train station.
We would be meeting our group for the Mondo parade for practice right after dinner. We needed a little more practice. The kick off for the Oeshiki celebration would start tonight around seven and end around midnight. Some would stay at Honmon-ji chanting all night till the service in the early morning.
Since several of our participants were vegetarians it was sometimes difficult to find good food to eat. With the help of one of the participants we found that the Japanese fast food chain Moss Burger had a vegetarian burger. Made of a grilled rice ball with vegetables. It was very good and we ate at Moss Burger before the parade.
They had created a sign for our group. Since Rev. Faulconer had set up the Pilgrimage the sign read Portland Nichiren Buddhist Temple since Rev. Faulconer was the Portland Temples minister at that time.
Our teachers showing us the drum beat we would be playing during the parade.
After the parade we would join the chanting in the Shoshido for a couple hours (below). Some people would continue the chanting throughout the night.
We would go back to the hotel and catch a little sleep before getting up early and joining the Oeshiki service.
Info on Oeshiki on the web which includes a video cast of the events. There is also video of past parades.