The Story of Torii A torii, who's literal meaning is bird abode, is a traditional Japanese gate typically found at the entrance to a Shinto shrine, where it symbolically marks the transition from the profane to the sacred. I am drawn to both the form and symbolism. We are often confronted with duality and contradiction. I like paradox, and a world where opposites coexist. This little stool and it's brothers and sisters start at this juncture.