• LOCATION 7 | Fushimi Inari Shrine: An In-Depth Guide

    Wabisabi - The highest aesthetic value in Japanese culture

    Wabisabi - The highest aesthetic value in Japanese culture on Kyoto audio tour Fushimi Inari Shrine: An In-Depth Guide

    Make your way around the side of the main hall then stop for a moment.

    Have a look up at its roof.

    The roof is made of layers of cypress skin, and noticeably asymmetrical. This is called Flow Style, representing the highest aesthetic beauty in Japanese culture, Wabisabi. It's like Wasabi with "bi" in between. The easy way to understand this, is that it's the beauty of imperfection.

    Everything in this world is imperfect. But some people strive to be perfect. If you think about Japanese trains, they are quite punctual, or if you look down, you can even find the grid that organizes gravel. But they are never perfect. That's why it's so beautiful. Japanese gardens are almost always asymmetrical or random compared to western ones. Because Wabisabi is valued in Japan.

    Now with the back of the main hall on your left, continue walking. You'll shortly get to another Torii gate with two foxes, on your right. I'll meet you there.

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Fushimi Inari Shrine: An In-Depth Guide