This is Inabuchi(稲淵) area in Asuka.
A beautiful countryside landscape evokes nostalgia. Golden ears of rice shine under a high autumn sky, and cluster amaryllises are in bloom at the edges of the paddy fields.
I visited Inabuchi area, Asuka in Nara Prefecture. Asuka, the ancient capital of Japan, is famous for terraced paddy fields and ancient burial mounds. This soothing scenery never disappoints me. I deeply breathe in fresh air and fully feel recharged.
I saw a lot of dragonflies.
The paths are lined with lovely scarecrows.
My favorite. Father and Son are enjoying Sake rice wine after working in the fields.
Inabuchi is well-known for fascinating terraced paddy fields, but also backed by a lot of charming bamboo groves. The contrast of the bamboos in the sun and in the shade was beautiful. While I was taking photos, one bamboo in the shadow was glistening for about ten seconds or so. It was a mystery! I imagined Princess Kaguya in "The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter" might have came down to the bamboo from the moon.
Since ancient times Japan has been called beautifully "Mizuho no Kuni （瑞穂の国), Land Blessed with Abundant Rice"where the people have been growing rice for more than 2000 years. Freshly boiled pearly rice is the best delicacy and the symbol of happiness. When I feel down, steaming boiled rice gives me a power to recover. Rice is the only one product whose self-sufficiency rate is 100% in Japan.
This area is blessed with rich sources of water.
It is hard to imagine why Cluster Amaryllis flowers are associated with ominous images. The flowers have a lot of different names in Japanese. According to Wikipedia, they are called, flowers of the dead, ghost flowers, hell flowers, flowers of abandoned children and so on.
But, also they are appreciated as celestial flowers. I agree with this 100%!
I am fascinated by this delicate beauty.
Asuka is also the cradle of Buddhism of Japan. In 538 or 552, Buddhism was officially introduced to Japan through King Song (聖明王) of Korea who sent Buddhist statues and sutras to the Emperor. Whether or not Buddhism should be accepted in Japan, pro-Buddhist party led by the Soga clan (蘇我氏) and anti-Buddhist party led by the Mononobe clan (物部氏) fought against each other. After 35 year struggles, the pro-Buddhist Soga clan won the war. This war is often said to have been the religious war, but also it is said that actually two powerful clans struggled for supremacy. In Japan religious wars have been rare. In 596, Soga no Umako （蘇我馬子）, the supreme leader of the Soga clan, built Asuka-dera Temple, the first Buddhist temple in Japan.
This is called "Ishi-butai 石舞台" , which literally means "Stone Stage". This stone stage consists of about thirty granite rocks and weighs about 2300 tons. This Stone Stage is believed to be the tomb of Soga no Umako who was the most powerful man at that time and built Asuka-deraTemple, the first Buddhist temple in Japan.
Around Stone Stage, Japanese sliver grasses are shining in the sun and beckoning us.
The spikes of the grasses look like sparkling jewels.
my related blog, Nostalgic autumn.