Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Walking the women's path

Yesterday I walked part of the women's path that encircles Mount Koya. Until the late 19th century, women were not permitted to enter the mountain enclave, but would still make arduous hike up to the gates, then walk from shelter to shelter around the entire perimeter. It was not a simple stroll, this path clings to the edges of the mountain and certainly drives home the notion that women belonged on the margins.

This morning we met one last time with Hideo, the young abbot who has been giving us intsruction in meditation. His hands are always on his prayer beads, a constant reminder of the call to prayer. I gave him a copy of Meditations: On the Monk Who Dwells in Daily Life by Thomas Moore (there is an excerpt featured in last Friday's wisdom story at People for Others) as the concept of contemplation in daily life was one of the threads of the conversations we had had.

The adventures of the crew are here.

Photo is of Hideo's hands.


  1. The picture in my mind of the women, clinging to the edge of the mountain, circling, circling, circling.... it's just heartbreaking.

    And so very real.

    I love your trip!

  2. Oh my gosh, what an image! I got a card from you today, thank you.