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Photographer's Note

Entry for the winter scavenger hunt: Sadness.

At lunchtime I went for a walk and came upon a little temple with a graveyard and a kindergarten next to it. Just opposite the kindergarten were some statues of Jizo.
Jizo is very popular in Japan; from a legend of the Jodo sect of Buddhism in the 14-15th Centuries, children who die prematurely are sent to the underworld as punishment for causing sorrow to their parents. There they have to build small towers of pebbles to pray for Buddha's compassion, but demons come along and knock them over. The Jizo comes to rescue and protect the children.
Jizo statues are usually seen wearing red bibs and hats, which are offered in faith to shorten the length of stay for the children in the underworld. There are also toys offered, which I guess are for the children to play with, and sometimes candies and chocolate.
These toys include some popular cartoon characters in Japan, as well as a very odd- and old-looking tin Donald Duck mad in China.

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