• Yuri

銀閣寺に月を思う/Think of The Moon at Silver Pavilion

先日、日本語を勉強する学生さんたちをご案内しました。銀閣寺を題材に、日本文化と月を考える、この9月にふさわしいお題のツアーでした。

The other day, we visited Ginkakuji Temple, or known as Silver Pavilion with students who learn Japanese language. The theme of the tour was the moon and Japanese culture.


まだ来日して間もない生徒さんたちを前に、「月」という漢字を覚えてもらい、ツアーをスタートしました。というのも、向月台や洗月泉など銀閣寺には「月」のつく遺構が複数あります。

First of all before starting the tour, the guide asked everybody to remember one Kanji letter "月" (the moon). This Chinese character was the key to the tour, and Silver Pavilion has several places named with this letter.


最初に月待山を眺めながら、月や東の持つ意味合いについてお話ししました。どちらも「再生」に関連付けられることがあります。

We started our topic with the mountain called Tsukimachiyama, or the moon waiting mountain. Literally, the mountain is located in the east, where the moon rises. The east and the moon are often associated with renewal or rebirth in Japanese culture.


きっと義政はこの眺めを見ながら月を待っていたのかもしれませんね、というようなロマンチックなことを言っていると、景色を見る目も変わります。

When we came just in front of the building, I (guide) said that the owner in the past were maybe also waiting for the moon from the very same spot. The students might feel in the same way as him.


後に、義満と義政を比較したり、銀閣寺の土地柄のお話をさせていただきました。

Later on, we talked about the owner and his grandfather, who both were shogun, that is the leader of all samurai. And also about that this Ginkakuji Temple (Silver Pavilion) is in a unique area which was originally a cemetery.


8代将軍義政は、幼名を義成(よししげ)と言いました。その後政治への意気込みがあったのか、義政と名乗りますが結果としては幕府の堕落を止められず、1467年から11年にもわたる応仁の乱を引き起こしてしまいます。

The owner is known as Yoshimasa (義政), the 8th shogun of Ashikaga family. His childhood name was Yoshishige(義成). Notice 成 changed into 政 here. This means he wants to be a great politician, as 政 means politics. However, he couldn't control his government enough, and caused Onin War, fought from 1467 till 1478, which was the most terrible civil war happened in Kyoto.


祖父3代将軍義満のような立派な将軍になりたかったのかもしれません。そう思うとどことなく切ないような気もします。ただ月を待っていたのではなくて、東から昇る月に自分の再生を願ったのかもしれませんね。

Perhaps he was jealous of his grandfather, who was the greatest 3rd shogun. Thinking of his life, Yoshimasa might have lived a painful life. He might have wished a better life, while viewing the moon rising from the east.


ただ景色や建物を見るだけではなく、少し違ったテーマから銀閣寺を鑑賞でき楽しかったと言っていただき嬉しい限りです。日本語の勉強も頑張ってくださいね!

I was very happy to hear they enjoyed with this theme, not just looking at the scenery and architecture. Have a great stay in Japan and improve your Japanese!

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