The bodhisattva Jizō dressed as an itinerant monk holds a with-granting jewel and a monk's staff with six rings that announces his coming as he traverses the six realms of being in Buddhist thought. From hell to paradise, Jizō's compassionate presence illuminates the righteous way and saves from harm those who call out to him.The beautiful flowing movement of the garment dates this work to the early Kamakura period. Sculptures from that time show an interest in the actual presence and physicality of the figure. The shoes are unusual, found only occasionally on standing Jizō sculptures of the late twelfth to thirteenth century. Traces of richly colored paint and cut-gold decoration remain on the lower half of the sculpture, giving us a rare glimpse of the work's original beauty.