Peace Monuments and Kannon Statues: Faith and Shapes Seen in the Statues of Nagasaki Peace Park


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  • 平和モニュメントと観音像―長崎市平和公園内の彫像における信仰と形象―
  • ヘイワ モニュメント ト カンノンゾウ : ナガサキシ ヘイワ コウエン ナイ ノ チョウゾウ ニ オケル シンコウ ト ケイショウ

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<p>This paper discusses the “memorial service” conducted for the statues in Nagasaki Peace Park. The well-known Heiwa Kinen-zō (Peace Prayer Statue) is an important tourism resource for Nagasaki City. However, this huge and attention-drawing statue, designed by sculptor Kitamura Seibō, who aimed to create a religion-neutral Heiwa Kinen-zō as a memorial to the victims who died in the atomic bomb explosion, has been heavily criticized by local residents and is considered unsatisfactory. As it accommodates no burial urns, an official memorial hall with a statue of Kannon, the Bodhisattva in Buddhism, was built, with the local government involved. Kannon is related to the remains of the deceased and functions well for any memorial purposes. Here, Kannon is well-known and recognized for consoling people by embracing the meaning of “memorial services,” an important concept in Buddhism. Therefore, even in a public area such as the Peace Park, a concrete religious figure is vitally important.</p>


  • Religion and Society

    Religion and Society 24 (0), 97-111, 2018-06-09

    The Japanese Association for the Study of Religion and Society


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