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To start the year, here’s an appreciation of a site in Japan that would have left even the Zen-imbued architects of Kyoto’s sublime Kinkaku-ji (Temple of the Golden Pavilion) open-mouthed with awe.

Not only that, but it’s a site where basic questions about the nature of reality are being probed — questions that go beyond even the most mind-bending conundrums posed by Zen masters at the Enkaku-ji Temple in Kamakura, Kanagawa Prefecture. (And I know they are mind-bending because I went on a Zen course there once, and we had to wake at 4 a.m. every day to meditate upon them.)

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