Did you know that a bra temple exists in Japan?
If you’re looking for a scary encounter in Japan, there are hundreds of abandoned ruins dotted around the country that will make the hairs stand up on the back of your neck as soon as you step inside. Called “haikyo“, these dilapidated, hidden buildings often contain household items and treasured mementos inside, covered in dust and arranged just as their former residents would have left them, making it seem like the ghosts of the departed are still hanging around, watching your every move.
While these places are popular among haikyo enthusiasts, there’s one abandoned building that’s currently making news around Japan for being one of the most eerie ever discovered. The reason for its notoriety is the fact that one of its rooms is filled with…women’s lingerie. What’s making it even more disturbing is the fact that these undergarments have been spread out on display, hanging from the ceiling inside a former Buddhist temple.
▼ Called the “Bra Temple”, the story is so strange it’s even been featured on Japanese television.
弐寺かと思ったら ブラ寺だった！ https://t.co/FC1yfnKcvk—
ゆう@(PA-PU -) 仮面男子☆ (@LuciferPapu) December 20, 2016
The exact whereabouts of the temple is known only to people active in the haikyo community, but despite its secret location, there are a number of photos showing what the place looks like on social media.
▼ The building sits in a quiet area at the top of an old disused set of stone stairs, slowly being consumed by the nature that flourishes alongside it.
From the outside, the run-down temple building looks like nothing out of the ordinary, but inside it’s a very different story.
mo10fu3@白熊 (@mo10fu_3) December 19, 2016
The room that’s freaking everyone out here contains a bed and a collection of bras and garter belts, strewn across the walls and ceiling.
暴力寺が家から近かった…((((；ﾟДﾟ)))) #haikyo #urbex #japan_urbex #tv_urbex #the_art_of_grime #grime_nation#urbex_rebels #urbex_utopia#ig_urbex #ic_urbex #jj_urbex#urbexnetwork #lost_places#abandon_seekers_ #G_S_I #abandoned_junkies #abandonedearth #abandoned_greece #abandonedplaces #kf_urbandonedmasks #kings_abandoned #rsa_preciousjunk #decay_and_style #廃墟 #妄想税 #祝ってあげる #きのこ寺 #ブラ寺 #廃墟依存 #廃墟保全協会
▼ There are even a couple of pairs of stockings at the back of the room.
次行ったら俺のパンツ引っ掛けてこようかな。 #ブラ寺 #きのこ寺 #写真撮ってる人と繋がりたい #写真好きな人と繋がりたい #ファインダー越しの私の世界 #廃#単焦点 #廃墟 #廢墟 #廃墟保全協会 #haikyo#ruins#urbex#urban_exploration#abandoned#ruins#japan_ruins#japan_urbex#jj_urbex#ic_urbex#ur8x#ig_urbex#kings_abandoned#loves_decay#jj_abandoned#sombrexplore#ig_abandoned#loves_abandoned#decay_nation#urbex_utopia#kf_urbandonedmasks モザイク処理大変だったお
While it looks like an avante-garde art installation in the light of day, at night, the place becomes incredibly spooky.
菊池亨 (@kikuchi_BURGER) November 11, 2016
The bizarre interior decorations first appeared about six years ago, and since then the place has been drawing haikyo enthusiasts from around the country, who’ve dubbed it the “bra temple”.
みんなの遠足ログ♫ 廃墟業界を賑わせているといえる某ブラ寺。一面に広がるブラ。簡単に取れないようネジでしっかり留めてある。特定の女性への恨みつらみが色々書いてあったが・・なぜこの表現手法をとったのか。 投稿者：エヌビー https://t.co/SPCE43T8ZE—
終末オトナ遠足 (@otonapicnic) October 19, 2016
For many visitors though, it’s not the bras and garter belts that are disturbing, but the paraphernalia located around the room. There’s a small naked doll nailed to the wall, occult items, and photos of a smiling woman, whose name appears on strips of paper around the room.
[森のブラ寺] エサに釣られて来てしまいました… #廃墟 https://t.co/rwn7WHY7je—
廃墟Walker_KUKUL (@Ruins_Walker) October 23, 2016
コップのカドでグリ美ちゃん (@otitisibori) November 28, 2016
According to a note next to a pile of palm-sized questionnaires for visitors to fill in, the unusual-looking room is said to be an art display.
ブラ寺いってきた！！ 愉快でしたよ！！ #廃墟 https://t.co/K2k2rm4Q7U—
仏滅氏｢年中背徳…日々道化…｣ (@snsk490) September 11, 2016
Some visitors remain unconvinced, however, with the temple’s chequered past making a grudge like this seem not so far-fetched, given that the temple was closed in 2002 following complaints that it was overcharging people for services. According to reports, the buildings on the grounds were all built using funds from people who had been deceived, earning it the nickname “Swindler’s Temple”.
ひらなんとか (@hiramasaaji) January 22, 2015
Still today, the mini Golden Hall on the premises remains untouched, with “ihai” spirit tablets containing the posthumous names of local deceased ancestors creating a mystical scene.
The jury is out on whether Swindler’s Temple, or Bra Temple, is the work of a person with a grudge or a bemused local artist. Given the secrecy surrounding its location, however, it’s a mystery that may very well remain unsolved for years to come.
If you’re after more spooky adventures on holy grounds, the shrine of the dolls will be right up your alley. Personally though, we’ll be sticking to more sedate pilgrimages, preferably with cute and cuddly cats involved.