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The Golden Dragon's Dance: Sensoji Temple's Legendary Rebirth



2024.03.07 (Thu)

By Dan Lewis, inbound tourism adviser and consultant, long-term Japan resident & outdoor activity enthusiast.

Sensoji Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo, bears a story of triumph over adversity. Devastated during the Tokyo Air Raid of 1945, the temple rose from ashes in 1958. That year, the main hall was rebuilt and a temple dance called "Kinryu no Mai" was created to commemorate the reconstruction. The name "Kinryu no Mai" comes from the mountain name of Sensoji Temple, Kinryuzan. And thus the hopes of the local community and believers across Japan were fulfilled.

Measuring approximately 18 meters in length and weighing nearly 88 kg, the Golden Dragon dances through the Nakamise and temple precincts as if alive, accompanied by enchanting melodies on March 18.

March 18 holds special importance, commemorating Bodhisattva Kannon's manifestation in 628 AD. The Jigen-e Ceremony celebrates Kannon's divine presence, while the Golden Dragon Dance honors this sacred occasion.

According to legend, on the day of Kannon's manifestation, about 1,000 pine trees grew overnight, and after three days, a dragon with golden scales descended from the sky into the pine forest.

Sensoji Temple's legacy stretches beyond its physical presence. It embodies the enduring spirit of faith and devotion, inspiring generations with its timeless tales and traditions.

Event Information:
March 18

Senso-ji Temple:
・5 min. walk from Tokyo Metro Ginza Line Asakusa Station
・5 min. walk from Tobu Skytree Line Asakusa Station
・7 min. walk from Toei Subway Asakusa Line Asakusa Station
・5 min. walk from Tsukuba Express Asakusa Station

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