Part IV

Change of setting but still the same story. I know I’m no good at drawing fighting scenes, I promise I’ll practice more.

The Heian period was a time of peace. Nobody in the aristocracy would even think about fighting and the only armed danger that was really mentioned were pirates during sea travel. That is probably one reason why the people in power positions changed completely between the Heian period and the following Kamakura period (1185-1333) that introduced the very first Shôgun to Japan, Minamoto no Yoritomo. The Heian period ended with a 5 year war that was the beginning of the famous Samurai age.

One thing that I remember was discussed in class was the emergence of fighting Buddhist monks, gaining influence and using force to invade and plunder villages. Not the kind of Buddhist monks you usually hear about. I am afraid I don’t know much about them, but the thought of actual warrior monks seemed so intriguing that I decided to use that idea anyway.

The sign in the hall says seishin ittô (精神一到), by the way, a shortening of the expression seishin ittô nanigoto ka narazaran (精神一到何事かならざらん) which could be roughly translated as “where there’s a will there’s a way”. The little monk’s name en is written with the character for circle (円) that is nowadays used for the currency (Yen) as well. A lot of monks had that character in their name and I like it for its simplicity.

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Chocho Monogatari Part IV

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