knits by sachi

Mizuko statues and the Tokyo tower

on January 23, 2017

My younger son is very fond of observatories. He wanted to go up on both the Skytree and the Tokyo tower. I said to him ‘Could we just do with either one? maybe the Skytree since that is much taller?’ and he said no. He wanted to take photos of the Skytree form the Tokyo Tower as well.

But this turned out to be a rather interesting journey and I am glad that we made this extra effort.

On the way to the Tokyo tower, we came across this temple, Zojo-ji. It is a Buddhist temple built in the year 1393.


In their premises, there is a Mizuko garden. Mizuko, literally “water child”, is a Japanese term for a dead fetus or a dead baby. There are rows of stone statues of children represent unborn children, including miscarried, aborted, and stillborn children. Parents can choose a statue in the garden and decorate it with small clothing and toys. Those statues are called Jizō, the guardian of unborn children. They are to ensure that Mizuko are brought to the afterlife.

I knew there are temples which specializes Mizuko kuyo or fetus memorial services, but hadn’t seen a garden like this before. I thought these statues are very sweet.

The little statues, Jizo, are often dressed in red. It is believed that the red has the power to expel evils. What I liked the most about this temple’s Jizo was the red crocheted hats of course.


I wonder if they are made by local volunteers.


And we found a rather unique one among them. We found it amusing.


It was a nice sunny day and I felt such a peace looking at these little ones with toy pinwheels by their sides.

Zojo-ji is on the way to Tokyo tower if you take a subway.

We had visited The Skytree in the same morning so that the Tokyo tower was not too impressive for its height but it is still a famous landmark of Tokyo. I also found a funny sign at the entrance.


I didn’t know you could walk up the Tower! I understand that you shouldn’t make an attempt under the influence of alcohol, but I don’t think anyone with right mind would even think of trying it.

The first time I visited the Tower was 30 years ago. I had just been accepted by a university. I was young and so excited about the prospect of living in a big city. This time, I was standing the same spot with my two sons who were the same age as I had been then. I felt extremely lucky.


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