Jizō is a beloved and popular Japanese divinity known to alleviate the suffering of the living and the dead. Jizō is also the patron saint of travelers. I first encountered Jizō statues at the Garden of Unborn Children in Tokyo, and was intrigued to see this other representation. As I continued through Japan, I found thousands of representations of this Bodhisattva.
At Hase-dera, the Japanese and foreigners alike patiently waited in line to ladle water from the trickling stream. This little girl watched her mother spoon the water and pour it in a cascade down the statue's body and carefully followed suit, insisting that she could perform the task and the little prayer on her own (she did).