Temple Tales


Howdydoo! Welcome to the static, visible home of the TEMPLE TALES Newsletter and Podcast!


The Temple Tales newsletter is available by subscription (it's FREE!). Click here to sign up.
  • The Temple Tales Newsletter is around 1500 words (like three typed, single-space pages) or less, with illustrations, and contains links to audio versions (usually around ten minutes, and seldom over fifteen.) It's delivered Monday, Wednesday, and Friday (evenings in East Asia, mornings in America).
  • Now, here's something special: ONLY the emailed newsletter--not the blog, nor the podcasts--will end with a few "thought questions" to help you integrate the lessons in each edition into your own life, addressing the question, "How can this benefit YOU?" There also will be a "secret group" on Facebook--available ONLY to newsletter subscribers--to discuss those questions.
  • Newsletter subscribers may also receive occasional "extras," short ebooks or similar publications (that will also be for sale here at TheTempleGuy.org).
To hear a podcast, click the links below. The "Show Notes" will actually be just a blog version of the newsletter. In addition to the podcatchers listed below (archive.org, iTunes, Google Podcasts, and Spotify), Podcasts may also available separately on your favorite "podcatcher."

Topics for each issue/episode include:
  • Temples and/or the Figures found in them (Buddhas, Bodhisattvas, etc.) [I've been to a LOT of them--like well over 600 in Japan and China alone!]
  • Historical Figures, especially famous Japanese and Chinese monks;
  • Buddhist and other folk stories from Japan and China;
  • The Buddha's teachings (Dharma) and the background and contents of Buddhist scriptures (Sutras)
  • Scenes from the Buddha's life
  • Reviews of Buddhist books and films
  • PLUS, occasionally, I'll cover similar topics but instead of focusing on temples, I'll zoom in on the Spanish missions and Native sites of California, Baja California, and the American Southwest--all part of my travels and longtime interests.
So head for TempleTales.Substack.com and PUT YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS IN THAT BOX! (if you haven't already) OR, alternately, send it to me at thetempleguy [at] gmail [dot] com, and I'll hook you up. (It'll be kept safe, I promise! And you can unsubscribe at any time just by asking.)

In true, bloggy, annoying fashion, the most recent episode is listed first in the posts below.


Episodes:

Ep. 100: The Temple of the Sleeping Dragon (10/20/2020) In the splendor that is Xi'an, Wolong Temple barely registers on most itineraries. Yet, it's called "the oldest temple in Shaanxi Province"! Let's take a look in this landmark 100th episode of TEMPLE TALES!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 099: The Temple of the Warring Monks (10/16/2020) Let's look at a place that was once headquarters for an army of warring monks, Mii-dera on the shores of Lake Biwa and--more significantly--at the base of Mount Hiei, in this episode of TEMPLE TALES!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 098: A Touch of Tibet in Old Chang'an (10/13/2020) Four days after returning from the first leg of my "Chinese Pilgrimage," I was standing in front of the Terracotta Army, one of China's highest-rated tourist destinations. In just three days we would visit this as well as four temples from my list. Come visit the first one in this episode of TEMPLE TALES!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 097: Stone Mountain Temple (10/9/2020) I have been twice to beautiful Ishiyama-dera, Shiga Prefecture's "Stone Mountain Temple." Learn about both visits in this episode of TEMPLE TALES!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 096: The Temple of the Jade Buddha (10/6/2020) Jade Buddha Temple, the last temple I saw in Shanghai, is the home of several magnificent (you guessed it) jade Buddhas. Let's visit them!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 095: The Temple among the Rocks(10/2/2020) Another temple, another mountain. Iwama-dera (also called Shoho-ji, meaning "Correct Dharma Temple") is located at an altitude of 1280 feet, which accounts for the misty atmosphere on the January day in 2001 when I visited. Come and see!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 094: Shanghai's Temple of Tranquility and Peace (9/29/2020) Check out the changes wrought at Shanghai's Jing'an Temple--the Temple of Tranquility and Peace--in the two-and-a-half short years between my visits in August of 2009 and again in January of 2012!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep: 093: The Upper Ghee Temple (9/25/2020) When you visit Daigo-ji in Kyoto, you get two--or even three--temples for the effort of one. Find out what I'm talking about in this episode of Temple Tales!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 092: The Yuanming Lecture Hall (9/22/2020) When is a temple not a temple? When it's an office building in the parking lot of a hotel! You'll see what I mean when we visit the Yuanming Lecture Hall!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 091: Uji's Mimuroto-ji and Byodo-in (9/18/2020) Sometimes a pretty little temple leaves the visitor with pretty little to say. Nevertheless, for the sake of completeness, let's pay a quick visit to Mimurotoji in Uji--and one of its much more famous neighbors!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 090: Shanghai's Temple of the Dragon Flower (9/15/2020) Come along with me and visit Longhua Temple, the largest ancient Buddhist temple in Shanghai.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify] - [Amazon]

Ep. 089: A Small Hall and a BIG Buddha (9/11/2020) Number 9 on the Saigoku Pilgrimage is a single hall in a formerly-great but these-days-diminished temple in Nara. It also happens to be a fifteen-minute walk from Todai-ji, home of Japan's largest statue of the Buddha. We'll visit both--plus one more!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 088: Shanghai's "Incense Pavilion" (9/8/2020) Shoving off from my digs in Beilun, I at last moved from this trip's first base to its second and last, a hotel in the Jing'an district of Shanghai, where I visited one of the most precious little temples I saw in all of China, the "Incense Pavilion."
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 087: The Other Hase Kannon (9/4/2020) Do you remember the Great Kannon at Kamakura's Hase-dera from Episode 048? Well, let's visit the scene of the rest of the story, the original Hase-dera Temple down south.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 086: Ningbo's Temple of Seven Pagodas (9/1/2020) Let's visit the new-but-lovely Qita Temple, the "Temple of Seven Pagodas," in central Ningbo, China.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 085: Oka-dera: The Temple on the Hill (8/28/2020) You can get to the temple in Asuka officially named Ryugai-ji just by saying, "Oka-dera"--the Temple on the Hill. Let's do it!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 084: The Temple of King Ashoka (8/25/2020) Let's continue our day trip in the eastern outskirts of Ningbo, and visit Ayuwang Temple, said to possess an authentic relic of the Buddha's skull! For reals? Come along and find out!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 083: Tsubosaka-dera, a Taste of India in Japan (8/21/2020) Come join me for a little "taste of India"--right smack dab in Nara, Japan!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 082: Tiantong Temple, Chinese Fount of Japanese Soto Zen (8/18/2020) Two temples in (or near) the city of Ningbo in Zhejiang Province, in one day? Yes, please!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 081: The Temple of the Kudzu Well (8/14/2020) Fujii-dera, named for the arrowroot or kudzu vine, is found at the end of a shopping street in a suburb of Osaka. Learn more about it!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 080: Dharma Rain Temple (8/11/2020) Let's pay a visit to the temple the name of which has impressed me more than any other. If my karma ever results in my being allowed to found a temple of my own, it, too, will probably be called Fayu--"Dharma Rain."
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 079: Sefuku-ji, the Kansai Pilgrimage's Most Remotest Temple (8/7/2020) Come along as I visit one of the most remotest temples on the Saigoku pilgrimage--these days, at least. Let's visit Sefuku-ji in Izumi City, Osaka Prefecture.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 078: Puji, Putuoshan's Primary Temple (8/4/2020) On the morning of my last full day on the island, I finally entered the gates of Puji, as we'll see in this episode.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 077: A Temple on the Powder River (7/31/2020) Let's continue on down the pilgrim's path from Kimii-dera and visit Number 3 of Japan's Saigoku Kannon Pilgrimage.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 076: The Temple of Aiding Wisdom on Putuoshan (7/28/2020) Back in Episode 056 we visited the Nanhai Guanyin area of Putuoshan in Zhejiang Province. Let's continue that day's touring and drop in on Huiji Temple, the third of the 142 key temples I visited in China.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 075: Kimii-dera, the Temple of Three Wells (7/24/2020) Come along as I visit this intimate temple (between visiting two of Japan's largest holy sites).
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 074: The Final Residence of a Crazy Monk (7/21/2020) Let's continue reliving my day trip to Hangzhou and visit Jingci Temple, last home of a crazy monk named Ji Gong.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 073: Japan's Highest Falls--oh, and a Temple (7/17/2020) Let's visit Seiganto-ji, the first numbered temple of the 33 dedicated to Kannon (Avalokiteshvara, the Bodhisattva of Compassion) in the Kansai area of Japan.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 072: Hangzhou's "Temple of the Soul's Retreat" (7/13/2020) I had been on many a pilgrimage in Japan, but I endured for five years before I discovered a way to tread the pilgrim's path in China. Come along on my first "official" Chinese temple outing.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 071: Temples along the Old Tokaido, Part I (7/10/2020) It's Photo Essay Friday again! We'll take a look at some of the temples I visited in Tokyo and Kanagawa Prefectures on my Aki Meguri or "Autumn Journey" down the Old Tokaido Highway in the fall of 2001.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 070: China's Heaven Horse Mountain (7/9/2020) Aside from the "Four Great Buddhist Mountains of China," there may be hundreds of smaller peaks covered in temples, and we'll visit one of them, Tianma Shan or "Heaven Horse Mountain."
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 069: Thoughts along the Pilgrim's Path (7/6/2020) Let's revisit some of the reflective journal entries I wrote on my 2001 Aki Meguri walk through Japan.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 068: Photo Essay Friday: The 500 Arhats at Home (7/3/2020) Let's whiz around to a number of temples in China to take a look at some of the denizens of various 500 Arhat Halls.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 067: Asuka-dera, Japan's Oldest Temple (7/1/2020) Let's visit tiny Asukadera, one of the earliest temples in Japan, and its homely Buddha statue, said to be the country's oldest.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 066: The Sistine Chapel of the Philippines (6/29/2020) Not far from the buried churches of Bacolor which we visited in Episode 031 is the lovely Betis Church of Saint James the Apostle.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 065: Friday Photo Essay: The Bigfoot Grottoes (6/26/2020) It's Photo Essay Friday, and this will be a good one: a visit to not just one, but TWO sets of grottoes near Dazu in Chongqing.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 064: Little Pilgrimages in Edo-Tokyo (6/24/2020) Let's wander a bit in Tokyo, exploring a few of the short pilgrimages I undertook there.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 063: The BuddhaS (6/22/2020) I had to teach my spell-checker that "Buddha" can be plural. Come join me for a survey of the range of BuddhaS available!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 062 Friday Photo Essay - Ancient Temples of Dapeng (6/19/2020) Let's take a look at a handful of small but fascinating temples across Mirs Bay from Hong Kong in an outlying district of the modern metropolis of Shenzhen!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 061: The Asakusa Kannon, My Home Temple in Tokyo (6/17/2020) Back to Japan for a visit to my "home temple," Tokyo's Senso-ji in Asakusa, and a crazy little heron dance at a festival!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 060: Ancient Dry Farmers of Northern Arizona (6/15/2020) Let's pay a visit to the ruins of the Sinagua people of northern Arizona, builders of what may be the northernmost Mesoamerican-style ball court yet discovered.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 059: On Foot around a Mountain Valley (6/12/2020) In high summer in 2001, as Tokyo suffered through yet another heatwave, I escaped to the mountains of Saitama Prefecture to soothe both body and spirit while hiking an ancient 60-mile pilgrimage path. Trudge along with me!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 058: Meet the 18 Arhats, Part II (6/10/2020) In Episode 057 we learned the background of those wacky characters known as the 18 Arhats, and met the first eight of them. In this Episode, we'll meet the remaining ten.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 057: Meet the 18 Arhats, Part I (6/8/2020) As we enter a temple's main hall, we may see on either side of us 18 odd-looking characters, nine to a side. Let's learn who they are, and start meeting them one by one.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 056: Mount Potalaka, Realm of the South Sea Guanyin (6/5/2020) Let's visit the stunning South Sea Guanyin (the Bodhisattva of Compassion) and environs on the Chinese island paradise of Putuo Shan.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 055: A Tale of Two Temples (6/3/2020) Let's visit two temples with identical names--and vastly different pronunciations--Huangbo-shan Wanfu-si in China and its "daughter" Obaku-san Mampuku-ji in Japan.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 054: Two Deaths in the Tale of the Heike (6/1/2020) From time to time I'll be sharing well-known stories from Japanese and Chinese culture. We'll examine two stories displaying mono no aware, the "transience of things," from the Japanese Tale of the Heike.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 053: The Stunning Pagodas of Zhengding (5/29/2020) On a sweltering late-summer day in 2011, my pilgrimage took me to the memorial pagoda of one of Zen's greatest Masters: Linji (called "Rinzai" in Japan). But nearby were three more pagodas to see--which I did, and you will too!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 052: In the Samurai's Garden (5/27/2020) Come with me as I visit Shisen-do, the retreat built by a retired samurai-turned-poet in Kyoto's northeast foothills--and now a Buddhist temple.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 051: The Big Buddha and the Little Temple at Leshan (5/25/2020) Let's visit what UNESCO calls the "largest" and "tallest" ancient Buddha statue in the world--and a pretty little nearby temple, in Leshan, China.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 050: All the Missions in a Day, Part II (5/20/2020) At last we'll finish up the "mission challenge"--visiting all 21 of California's missions in one day--encounter a couple of hiccups, and see if we make it before the day is over!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 049: All the Missions in a Day, Part 1 (5/18/2020) Come with me as I share the rollicking tale of my visit to all 21 of California's missions, from near the Mexican border to above ;San Francisco--in one day!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 048: The Great Kannon at Hasedera (5/15/2020) Come along as I revisit the temple I knew better than almost any other in Japan, the Hase Kannon at Kamakura.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 047: Kukai: A Japanese Monk in China (5/13/2020) Like Buddhism itself, the teachings of one of Japan's greatest masters--Kukai, known as Kobo Daishi--has its roots in China. We'll visit some key sites of the Daishi's Chinese study tour.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 046: How to Be a Bodhisattva (5/11/2020) Let's take a quick look at the Four Great Bodhisattvas and--more importantly--we'll see how you can become a Bodhisattva yourself, as we examine the Four Bodhisattva Vows.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 045: Spectacularity--The Hanging Temple of Golden Dragon Pass (5/8/2020) In my quest to bring you the weirdest and wildest things I've seen and done, I thought it was time to visit the Hanging Temple of Golden Dragon Pass, an example of true spectacularity!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 044: Traipsing Japan's West Country Circuit (5/6/2020) Let's take a look at a pilgrimage which, while not as famous as the one on Shikoku, is still of great significance: the 33 Kannon Temples of Saigoku, around Kyoto.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 043: The Stone Lions of Cochiti (5/4/2020) Come visit a unique spot sacred to some Native American groups in New Mexico, the Stone Lions of Cochiti.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 042: Miyamoto Musashi, Mystical Master Swordsman (5/1/2020) A quick visit to the southern Japanese city of Kumamoto and the cave where the great swordsman Miyamoto Musashi wrote his Book of Five Rings.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 041: The Summer Resort of the Qing Emperors (4/29/2020) Tang, Liao, Song, Yuan, Ming, Qing: The list of Chinese dynasties is almost musical. But how many realize that some of those regimes were not ethnically Chinese at all? Let's explore how ethnicity impacted on the summer resort of the Manchurian Qing emperors.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 040: Character Types and the Six Realms of Being (4/27/2020) Let's talk about the "Six Realms of Existence" in Buddhist cosmology--and their implications in everyday psychology.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 039: The Sacred Pilgrimage of Shikoku (4/24/2020) Come along as I take the briefest of looks at one of the world's most significant pilgrimages, the 88 Temple Route on Japan's Shikoku Island.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 038: The First Chan Patriarch and the Five (plus One) Great Temples of Guangzhou (4/22/2020) Let's take a look-see at the "Five Great Temples of Guangzhou" (sort of) and meet the First Patriarch of Chan (Zen) in China.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 037: Mission San Gabriel, Godmother of L.A. (4/20/2020) The fourth California mission to be established, San Gabriel, to its lasting glory (or shame) has been called "Godmother of the Pueblo of Los Angeles."
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 036: My Aki Meguri: Down the Old Tokaido (4/17/2020) Get the gist of my five-week ramble down Japan's Old Tokaido Highway, the one-time lifeline between the Emperor in Kyoto and the Shogun in Edo/Tokyo. And thrill to the idea of me walking over 300 miles!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 035: Wonderful Wuhan (4/15/2020) Let's visit two terrific temples in the most populous city in Central China (and find out how I narrowly missed settling down there!)
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 034: Tourist or Pilgrim? How to Behave in a Temple (4/23/2020) Let's examine the proper etiquette for visiting a temple, and learn how to behave more like a pilgrim than a tourist.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 033: Tracking Tianhou Temples in Nanshan, Shenzhen (4/10/2020) Come along and visit some temples dedicated to Tianhou--also called Mazu, a folk "goddess of the sea"--in the Nanshan District of Shenzhen, China, where I lived for over a decade.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 032: Marvelous Mount Koyasan, Center of Shingon Buddhism (4/8/2020) Join me as I explore Japan's sacred Mount Koyasan, spiritual home to the esoteric Shingon sect of Buddhism.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 031: The Buried Churches of Bacolor (4/6/2020) Come with me to my "home ground" of Pampanga Province in the Philippines and visit a couple of churches that are really "six meters under"!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 030: Another Snowy Day at Nariai-ji ;(4/3/2020) Let's visit one of the Three Most Scenic Spots in Japan, and a wintry mountaintop: just another snowy day at Nariai-ji in Miyazu, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 029: The Big Bathing Baby Buddha of Wuxi (4/1/2020) Come along as my wife and I help induct a brand-new Buddhist abbot, and visit "Heaven" in a Buddhist theme park.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 028: The Two Vehicles: Theravada and Mahayana (3/30/2020) Let's take a look at the two main branches of Buddhism: the Theravada of South Asia, and the Mahayana of East and North Asia.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 027: Heng and Ha, the Fiercesome Temple Guardians (3/27/2020) Meet the two colossal guardians in the Mountain Gate of Chinese temples, known as Heng and Ha! (And their Japanese cousins, the Ni-O.)
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 026: Kofuns, the "Pyramids" of Japan (3/25/2020) Egypt has the pyramids, but those aren't the world's only burial mounds. In Japan, they're called kofun, meaning simply "ancient tombs," and we'll visit a few on this episode of Temple Tales!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 025: California's Mission San Antonio de Padua (3/23/2020) Let's take a trip to California's grassy foothills and the old Spanish mission of San Antonio de Padua--and find out what it has to do with the progenitor of America's ninth-richest family.
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 024: Japan's Seven Lucky Gods (3/20/2020) An introduction to the Shichi Fukujin, Japan's super-popular "Lucky Gods"
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 023: China's Eight Immortals (3/18/2020) Come meet the group of colorful characters known as The Eight Immortals, some of China’s coolest and funnest "fairies."
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 022: The Six (and More!) Perfections (3/16/2020) Let's take a quick look at Mahayana Buddhism's Six Perfections (and more), and meet an elephant with six tusks!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 021: The Refuge Rock of the Sixth Zen Patriarch (3/13/2020) Master Huineng is touted as the Sixth Patriarch of the Zen (Chan) tradition. Let's take a quick look at this fascinating character, and visit the place where his enemies nearly roasted him--literally!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 020: The Great Buddha at Kamakura (3/11/2020) Let's pay a quick visit to the Great Buddha at Kamakura, who--despite typhoons, earthquakes, and tsunamis--sits on serenely to this day!
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 019: Ancient Churches in the City of Holy Faith (3/9/2020) Come visit some of the amazing old churches in Santa Fe, New Mexico--one of my favorite cities in the world! (Well, at least that I've been to.)
Newsletter - Podcasts: [Archive.org] - [iTunes] - [Google] - [Spotify]

Ep. 018: The Shrine of the Shogun (3/6/2020) Come visit a quiet corner hidden away in the very heart of Tokyo's version of "Central Park" where the spirit of Tokugawa Ieyasu, the first Shogun, is enshrined.
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Ep. 017: The Monk and the Monkey King (3/4/2020) Learn about one of the most popular stories in East Asia, about a journey toward the West--that is, India--to get some Buddhist scriptures.
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Ep. 016: The Five Precepts and the Reduction of Suffering (3/2/2020) How the Buddhist moral code can lead to less suffering--life's Problem Number One
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Ep. 015: The Mummified Masters of Nine Flower Mountain (2/28/2020) Not all mummies are in Egypt! Come see some mummified monks in Chinese temples.
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Ep. 014: The Deep Wisdom of Hakuin Zenji (2/26/2020) Visit the seat of one of Japan's greatest Zen Masters along the Old Tokaido Highway
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Ep. 013: The Oldest Church in the Philippines (2/24/2020) San Agustin Church in Manila was founded in 1571, but the current edifice dates "only" to 1607(!) Learn more about this intriguing place.
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Ep. 012: On the Banks of the River of Souls (2/21/2020) Sai-no-Kawara, the River of Souls, haunted by the spirits of children who had died too soon...
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Ep. 011: "Are You a Buddhist?" (2/19/20) What makes a Buddhist a Buddhist? And, is the Temple Guy one?
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Ep. 010: Devadatta, the Buddha's Evil Cousin (2/17/2020) Meet the "odd man out" in the Buddha's family--who became the enemy of the sangha.
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Ep. 009: The Grottoes at the Dragon Gate (2/14/2020) Come along as Lila and I visit the spectacular Longmen Grottoes in Henan, China.
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Ep. 008: The Execution Ground (2/12/2020) Strolling through the site of over 100,000 Edo-era executions.
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Ep. 007: The Missions of Baja California (2/10/2020) Traveling the King's Highway in Mexico
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Ep. 006: At a Mountain Hermitage (2/7/2020) Meeting a Master and debating with a monk
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Ep. 005: The Faces of Compassion (2/5/2020) The secret behind the faces on two statues at a temple in Saitama, Japan
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Ep. 004: Death by Parable (2/3/2020) The Buddha's foundational teachings about Old Age, Illness, and Death, told as stories based on In the Buddha's Words by Bhikku Bodhi
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Ep. 003: The Laughing Buddha and the Scowling General (1/31/2020) Why does everyone think the Buddha was a fat guy? No way!
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Ep. 002: Let's Visit a Chinese Buddhist Temple! (1/29/2020) A brisk walk through a Chinese Buddhist temple, an overview of things to come
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Ep. 001: Gong Hei Fat Choy! (1/27/2020) - "All about" (well, not ALL about) Chinese new Year.
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Ep. 000: Who the <BLEEP!> is The Temple Guy? (1/26/2020) - Introducing yours truly, and justifying how I dare call myself "The Temple Guy."
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Introduction: Take My Newsletter - Please! (1/19/2020) - A few words describing the newsletter/podcast and its contents.
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