Gods of wind and thunder change places

The Yomiuri Shimbun

The statues of thunder god Raijin surrounded by drums, left, and wind god Fujin carrying a bag of air, right, are seen at the Sanjusangendo pavilion in Kyoto.

The Yomiuri ShimbunA major change has been made to the arrangement of statues of the wind god and the thunder god, both national treasures, and 28 other Buddhist statues at the Sanjusangendo pavilion in Kyoto, for the first time in about 80 years.

The pavilion, which is part of Myohoin temple, unveiled the statues in the new arrangement Tuesday.

Until recently, the statue of wind god Fujin was placed on the far left, and that of thunder god Raijin on the far right.

As there was no apparent reason for this arrangement, the pavilion decided to change it back to the original one based on historical paintings and other source materials.

The statues are believed to have been the models for Tawaraya Sotatsu, a famous painter in the early years of the Edo period (1603-1867), when he painted “Fujin Raijinzu Byobu” (Wind God and Thunder God Screens). Therefore, the pavilion switched the placement of the statues to match the artwork, with Raijin on the left and Fujin on the right.

“The new arrangement will offer visitors even more benefit,” said Gijun Sugitani, 75, the head priest of Myohoin.Speech

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