The Dragon: Deity of Water, Protector of the Capital
Belief in imaginary, spiritual dragons arrived from mainland Asia and differs in Shinto and Buddhism. The blue dragon, as water deity, is one of the directional guardians believed to defend the ancient capital to the east. In Shinto, the water deity appears in various guises at shrines. In Buddhism, dragons ward off fires, bring the virtuous rain of Dharma, and often adorn the ceilings of lecture halls at Zen temples. Trace the dragon's footprints in worships and culture throughout the city.