Gorinto (5-tiered stupa) sculpted in four parts from tuff, an igneous stone composed primarily of volcanic ash. Muromachi Period ca. 1500, possibly earlier. Minor old loss and surface erosion. Variegated lichen accumulation.
Height: 66 cm
Base width: 23 cm
Base depth: 23 cm
Packaged weight: 37 kg
The gorinto is a uniquely Japanese style of stupa comprising five geometric forms, which correspond (from bottom) to earth, water, fire, wind, and ethereal space. The Japanese Shingon sect of esoteric Buddhism views the gorinto as a symbol of Dai-Nichi Buddha, who, underlying all things, manifests himself in the five elements making up the physical world.
Gorinto sculpted in four parts, the uppermost part comprising two of the five geometric forms, are far more uncommon than gorinto sculpted from a single stone. This is a notably strong example, substantial both in height and girth, fully intact and of a piece, and without a doubt dating to the Muromachi Period.