Nagoyama Cemetery is one kilometer west of Himeji Castle and located on a low-lying hill. In the stupa, which is a dorm-shaped building on the top of the hill, there is an alter which contains ashes of Siddhartha Gautama, founder of Buddhism. His ashes have been worshiped there since 1954 after being presented by the late Indian Prime Minister Nehru, with his wish for eternal world-peace and happiness for humanity.
On the ceiling of the stupa there are two phoenix images and a Kannon, goddess of mercy, drawn amongst clouds. While looking up you can find statues of Buddha (Enlightened One), two Bosatsus (who are dedicated to achieving complete Buddhahood), and 10 of Buddha's students as well as a Gautama Buddha's personal history rendered in mosaic [ 1 ] [ 2 ] on the wall. Also, statues of founders [ 1 ] [ 2 ] [ 3 ] of religious sects are located in the lower level. Visitors can feel at peace while surrounded by many sacred candles, lanterns and holy figures.
Just east of the stupa you can find the soldiers' cemetery. Since the Meiji Restoration in 1868, over 111,000 soldiers have found their final resting place there. Throughout Nagoyama there are countless rows of family graves on the hillside slopes. Many people visit this hill to pray, sight-see and walk.