RYOAN-JI, Japan: is a Zen temple in northwest Kyoto. The Ryōan-ji garden is considered one of the finest surviving examples of a "dry landscape", a refined garden design featuring rock formations arranged amidst a sweep of smooth pebbles raked into linear patterns. The setting is designed to facilitate meditation. The site of the temple was an estate of the Fujiwara family. In 1450, Hosokawa Katsumoto, a powerful warlord, acquired the land, built his residence, & founded a Zen temple.