Part of the Begin Japanology series, this episode looks at the typical five story pagoda (stūpa or chetiya), which is found in many temples throughout the country.
Some of these pagodas go back more than 1,000 years, more or less to the introduction of Buddhism from China, and are still standing today.
In fact the design of the pagodas, which is examined in this film, is one of the remarkable features of the buildings, and modern architects are also learning how to build better from their example.
Although it looks from the outside that the pagodas have five floors, this is not so, it is really a façade, and inside there are normally no floors or stairways.
The film explores these and other relevant matters to do with the construction and maintenance of these iconic buildings, as well as showing some of the best examples.