The master level of Japanese carpentry. Shinto temples are constructed without the use of metal fasteners, like nails and bolts, but are rather fixed together by the carving of joints into the wooden members. Friction holds the buildings in place for hundreds of years. The lumber which is used to build the temples is stored at the site for up to a year prior to erection, to allow for the wood to relax and come to rest within the specific local environment. To attain the title of temple carver, one must apprentice for fifteen years working eighty-hour weeks. Over this period the student will come to know the joints involved in all types of carpentry, and be able to chisel them out of the wood the same way a musician plays an instrument- without thinking about it.

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