Religious, Spiritual sights in Nagano Ken
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Zenkō-Ji Temple 善光寺 is believed to have been founded in the 7th century and is the home of the Ikkō-Sanzon, allegedly the first Buddhist image to arrive in Japan (in AD 552, from Korea). The image has quite a history; it's been the subject of disputes, lost, recovered and, finally, installed again. Don't expect to see it, however; it is said that 37 generations of emperors have not seen the image, though visitors may view a copy every seven years.
Zenkōji's immense popularity stems partly from its liberal welcoming of believers from all Buddhist sects, including women; its chief officiants are both a priest and a priestess.
The original site was south of the…