When we hear the name 'India,' even though it is a distant land, there is a feeling of nostalgia in our hearts. This was the land that gave birth to one of the four major civilizations in the ancient world. It is the land where, along with China, an advanced civilization prospered. It is a great Asian nation that had an impact on all the countries surrounding it. India was also the leader of the Non-aligned Nations which was formed after the Second World War.
However for us the Japanese, India is the land which introduced Buddhism to us. Before writing the name India as 'Indo' in Japanese with the kanji character phonetically, it was written as 'Tenjiku' a translation for Sindhu, an ancient name for India and was looked upon as the Paradise of the West where Sanzo Hoshi (Monk of Tripitaka) headed for in the great Chinese novel "Saiyu-ki (Record of a journey to the West)."

When European imperialists invaded India and other Asian countries, Japan was a closed country. India became a colony of the British Empire, was exploited and reduced to poverty. For a nation that was once so rich in wealth and spirituality, the image we now have of India is very confused. Moreover after the Meiji era, Japan turned its back on Asian countries including India to improve ties with Europe. We turned to West and concentrated on catching up with and overtaking them.
This distorted leaning has continued up to the present age, which has further developed the erroneous image of India as being a mystical, mysterious country. Our media projects India as a mystical, magical country, but any civilization will look at people different from themselves as being mystical. Moreover European civilization and Christianity also has its own claims to mysticism as does India.
We need to recognize the true image and true value of the third world starting with India, without the tinted glass of discrimination based on economy, especially now, when Japan is at last freeing itself from being a devotee of the West. And if the culture and art of India is closely observed, one will find that, as with its music and dancing, Indian architecture too has reached stupendous heights.
This book i"Indo no Kenchiku") intends to introduce this true image of Indian architecture, aided with a large number of colour photographs.



Ar UK Bhoobalan, FIIA,AIA