A Gate to Japanese Gardens
Torii is a traditional Japanese gate commonly found at the entry to a Shinto shrine. Torii are usually made from wood and frequently painted in a vermilion red colour. Today, Torii made of metal, such as steel or indeed stone can be found as well.
Torii Gates mark a transition from the profane to the sacred
The Torii gate marks the transition from the profane (the normal world) to the sacred (the shrine, that is the world of spirits). Passing underneath a Torii on the way to visit a shrine is, along with washing one’s hands and mouth with water, an act of purification and sanctification. Quiet a few shrines feature more than one, indeed many Torii. These arches are mostly donations by persons who had been lucky in their business.