Tō-ji is a Buddhist temple of the Shingon sect in Kyoto, Japan. It once had a partner, Sai-ji and, they stood alongside the Rashomon, gate to the Heian capital, it was known as Kyō-ō-gokoku-ji which indicates that it functioned as a temple providing protection for the nation. Tō-ji is located in Minami-ku near the intersection of Ōmiya Street and Kujō Street, southwest of Kyōto Station. Tō-ji was founded in the early Heian period; the temple dates from 796, two years after the capital moved to Heian-kyō. Together with its partner Sai-ji, the temple Shingon-in, it was one of only three Buddhist temples allowed in the capital at the time, is the only of the three to survive to the present. Tō-ji is associated with Kōbō Daishi. Though Tō-ji began to decline in the end of Heian period, it came back into the spotlight with the rise of Daishi Shinko in Kamakura period; the well-known Buddhist priest was put in charge of Tō-ji in 823 by order of Emperor Saga. The temple's principal image is of Yakushi Nyorai, the Medicine Buddha.
Many religious services for Daishi are held in the residence of Kōbō Daishi. The Five-story pagoda of Tō-ji stands 54.8 meters high, is the tallest wooden tower in Japan. It dates from the Edo period, when it was rebuilt by order of Iemitsu; the pagoda has been, continues to be, a symbol of Kyoto. Entrance into the pagoda itself is permitted only a few days a year; the five-storied pagoda was built during the Edo period in 1643. The Kondo or Golden Hall is the main hall of the temple, contains a statue of Yakushi from 1603; the Miedo is dedicated to Kobo Daishi called Kukai, the temple's founder. It stands on the location of his original residence; the hall is opened on the 21st of each month. The grounds feature a pond, in which turtles and koi swim; the grounds house an academically rigorous private school, from which many students are sent to elite universities. Tō-ji was rebuilt in the late Edo Period. During this rebuild, Tō-ji was dedicated to be a Shingon Buddhist temple; these temples were built in the mountains and utilized more natural and demographic design elements, dictating the resulting architectural layout.
In the Kamakura period, Japanese architects began to utilize technology to resist damage from earthquakes, rainfall and heat damage. These fortifications were integrated into the remodeling of Tō-ji; this style of building of defending against the natural elements evolved into the Zenshūyō style, seen on in the Kamakura period. This style utilizes the "hidden roof" innovation. Zenshūyō style temples, such as Tō-ji, are characterized by linear spacing outlines of the Garan, hinging panel doors, cusped windows called Katōmado, decorative pent roofs called Mokoshi. Although containing many of the elements of Zenshūyō style architecture, the Tō-ji temple uses the natural land around it to dictate the layout of the garan, a technique used in the Heian Period and Edo Period of Japanese Architecture; this correlates with the Shingon attribution by Emperor Saga in 823. The decorative mokoshi and outfitting of modern structural technology, was most integrated during the remodeling of the tower in the Kamakura Period.
Recognizing the historical and spiritual significance of Tō-ji, UNESCO designated it, along with several other treasures in Kyoto Prefecture, as part of the "Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto" World Heritage Site. On the 21st of each month, a famous flea market is held on the grounds of Tō-ji; this market is popularly called Kōbō-san, in honor of Kōbō Daishi, who died on March 21. The flea market features a variety of antiques, clothes, some food, typical second-hand flea market goods. By far the largest market is held on December 21. A similar market is held on the 25th of every month at Kitano Tenmangū called Tenjin. A Kyoto proverb proclaims, "Fair weather at Tō-ji market means rainy weather at Tenjin market", calling to mind Kyoto's fickle weather. A smaller, less-crowded, antique-oriented market is held at the Tō-ji grounds on the first Sunday of each month; the Rashomon was situated to the west of Tō-ji, though now only a marker remains, reachable a short walk west along Kujō street. A little further west was Sai-ji.
Tō-ji and Sai-ji were built at the southern edge of the capital, were the only Buddhist temples allowed in Heian-kyō at the time. Sai-ji disappeared in the 16th century; the reason was the lack of funds to maintain it. A legend says that at the time of a great drought, Kūkai, the priest at Tō-ji, Shubin, his colleague at Sai-ji, were both praying for the rainfall. Kūkai succeeded where Shubin had failed, Shubin, shot an arrow at Kūkai. At that time a Jizō took the arrow instead of Kūkai, saving his life. You can find the Jizō in question near the ruins of Rashōmon, it has been chipped. On July 7, 2007, one of the Live Earth concerts was staged at Tō-ji. List of Buddhist temples in Kyoto List of National Treasures of Japan List of National Treasures of Japan List o
Sanjūsangen-dō is a Buddhist temple of the Tendai sect in the Higashiyama district of Kyoto, Japan. The temple was founded in 1164 by Taira no Kiyomori for the cloistered Emperor Go-Shirakawa, it is known as Rengeō-in and belongs to the Myōhō-in temple complex. Sanjūsangen-dō is most famous for its massively long hondō dating from 1266 and designated a National Treasure of Japan, the collection of sculptures it houses, including 1001 standing Thousand-armed Kannon, 28 standing attendants, a statue of Fūjin and a statue of Raijin, the principal image of the temple, a big seated statue of Thousand-armed Kannon, all of them designated National Treasures in the category of sculptures, most of them dating to the Heian to Kamakura periods. Sanjūsangen-dō was founded by the famous samurai and politician Taira no Kiyomori in 1164 for the cloistered Emperor Go-Shirakawa, he built the temple in the emperor's own compound Hōjūji-dono in order to gain a noble title, that of Chancellor of the Realm, becoming the first samurai to do so.
Go-Shirakawa's compound was around 1100 square meters in size, divided into Kitadono. When Go-Shirakawa passed away in 1192, he was buried in the temple's east Hokkedō; the temple complex included several buildings other than the hondō, including a gojūnotō, a Kannondō and a Fudodō. All of these buildings were destroyed in 1249 by a fire that broke out in the city; the Emperor Go-Saga ordered the reconstruction of the hondō, which began in 1251. The building survives to the present day. From the original 1000 standing Thousand-armed Kannon dating from the temple's construction in the late Heian period, only 124 were saved from the fire; the Emperor ordered 876 new Kannon statues to replace the lost ones. These were created by three groups of Buddhist sculptors, Keiha and Inpa, during the course of 16 years. A popular archery tournament known as Tōshiya was held at the west veranda of the temple for 255 years during the Edo period; the contest originated in the late 16th century dating back to 1606 when a samurai named Asaoka Heibei is said to have shot 51 arrows in rapid succession down the length of the veranda.
In the beginning, archers shot arrows from the southern end of the veranda to the northern end where a curtain-like ornament was erected as a target. The contest gained popularity during the Edo period and by the late 17th century competitions between participants from the Owari and Kishū provinces were drawing big crowds; the duel between the famous warrior Miyamoto Musashi and Yoshioka Denshichirō, leader of the Yoshioka-ryū, is popularly believed to have been fought just outside Sanjūsangen-dō in 1604. In the second Sunday of January, the temple has an event known as the Rite of the Willow, where worshippers are touched on the head with a sacred willow branch to cure and prevent headaches, a modern version of the Tōshiya, the Festival of the Great Target, is held on the west veranda, drawing 2,000 participants from throughout Japan. Archers shoot arrows into targets 50 - 100 centimeters in diameter and 60 meters away at the opposite end of the veranda; the main deity of the temple is the Thousand Armed Kannon.
The statue of the main deity was created by the Kamakura sculptor Tankei and is a National Treasure of Japan. The temple contains one thousand life-size statues of the Thousand Armed Kannon which stand on both the right and left sides of the main statue in 10 rows and 50 columns. Of these, 124 statues are from the original temple, rescued from the fire of 1249, while the remaining 876 statues were constructed in the 13th century; the statues are made of Japanese cypress clad in gold leaf. The temple is 120 - meter long. Around the 1000 Kannon statues stand 28 statues of guardian deities. There are two famous statues of Fūjin and Raijin; the 28 guardian deities stand in front of the Buddhist Kannon have their origins in Sanskrit texts of Hinduism. These ideas came to Japan through China, the presence of both Hindu and Buddhist deities at Sanjūsangen-dō temple in Kyoto suggest various theories of the origin and spread of the spiritual and cultural ideas from India to east Asia. Life-size statues of these deities are housed at Sanjūsangen-dō where they guard the principal statue of the 11 feet tall seated Senju Kannon.
The temple features 1,000 standing statues of the Senju Kannon. The deities at Sanjūsangen-dō include Naraenkengo-ou, Misshaku-kongorikishi, Touhou-ten, Birurokusha-tennou, Birubakusha-tennou, Daibon-tennou, Taishaku-ten, Daibenkudoku-ten, Mawara-ou, Jinmo-ten, Konpira-ou, Manzensha-ou, Hippakara-ou, Gobujyogo-ten, Konjikikujyaku-ou, Sanshitai-sho, Nandaryu-ou, Sakararyu-ou, Karura-ou, Kondai-ou, Mansen-ou, Magoraka-ou, Makeishura-ou, Kendabba-ou, Ashura-ou, Kinnara-ou and Basusennin; these deities trace their origins to Indian Dharmic mythology covering Hindu and Buddhist, correspond to Varuna, Lakshmi, Shiva, Vayu, Narayana and others. List of National Treasures of Japan List of National Treasures of Japan Sanjūsangen-dō official web site Accessibility information
The Totasan Kakurin-ji is a temple of the Tendai sect in Kakogawa, Hyōgo, Japan. It was established by Prince Shōtoku's instruction in 589. Kakurin-ji's Taishidō was completed in 1112, Main Hall was finished in 1397. Both are National Treasures of Japan. Taishidō - National Treasure of Japan, it was built in 1112. Main Hall - National Treasure of Japan, it was built in 1397. Jōgyōdō - Important Cultural Property of Japan, it was built in Heian period. Gyōjadō - Important Cultural Property of Japan, it was built in 1406. Bell tower - Important Cultural Property of Japan, it was built in 1407. Gomadō - Important Cultural Property of Japan, it was built in 1563. Pagoda - It was built in Muromachi period. Sanmon - It was built in 1672. Kannondō - It was built in 1705. Kodō Shin-Yakushidō National Treasures of Japan List of National Treasures of Japan Historical Sites of Prince Shōtoku Official Site
Enryaku-ji is a Tendai monastery located on Mount Hiei in Ōtsu, overlooking Kyoto. It was founded in 788 during the early Heian period; the temple complex was established by Saichō known as Dengyō Daishi, who introduced the Tendai sect of Mahayana Buddhism to Japan from China. Enryaku-ji is the headquarters of the Tendai sect and one of the most significant monasteries in Japanese history; as such, it is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site "Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto". The founders of Jōdo-shū, Sōtō Zen, Nichiren Buddhism all spent time at the monastery. Enryaku-ji is the center for the practice of kaihōgyō. With the support of Emperor Kanmu, the Buddhist monk Saichō ordained a hundred disciples in 807. Maintaining a strict discipline on Mt. Hiei, his monks lived in seclusion for twelve years of study and meditation. After this period, the best students were retained in positions in the monastery and others graduated into positions in the government. At the peak of its power, Enryaku-ji was a huge complex of as many as 3,000 sub-temples and a powerful army of warrior monks.
In the tenth century, succession disputes broke out between Tendai monks of the line of Ennin and Enchin. These disputes resulted in opposing Tendai centers at Enryaku-ji and at Mii-dera, known as the Mountain Order and the Temple Order. Warrior monks were used to settle the disputes, Tendai leaders began to hire mercenary armies who threatened rivals and marched on the capital to enforce monastic demands; as part of a program to remove all potential rivals and unite the country, warlord Oda Nobunaga ended this Buddhist militancy in 1571 by attacking Enryaku-ji, leveling the buildings and slaughtering monks. Enryaku-ji's current structures date from the late 16th century through the first half of the 17th century, when the temple was reconstructed following a change of government. Only one minor building survived, the Ruri-dō, located down a long, unmarked path from the Sai-tō complex. During reconstruction, some buildings were transferred from other temples, notably Mii-dera, thus the buildings themselves are old, though they have not always been at this location.
Today, most of Enryaku-ji's buildings are clustered in three areas: Tō-dō, Sai-tō, Yokokawa. The monastery's most important buildings are concentrated in Tō-dō. Sai-tō is a 20-minute walk away downhill from Tō-dō, features several important buildings. Yokokawa is more isolated and less visited, about a 1:30 walk, is most reached by bus, which connects the three complexes and other locations on the mountain. On April 4, 2006, Enryaku-ji performed a ceremony for former leaders of Yamaguchi-gumi, by far the largest Yakuza organization in Japan; because such temple ceremonies have been used for Yamaguchi-gumi fund-raising and demonstrations of power, the Shiga Prefectural Police requested that Enryaku-ji cease performance of the ceremony. Rejecting the request, Enryaku-ji received crime-related money for the ceremony and allowed nearly 100 upper-level Yamaguchi-gumi leaders to attend. After reports in the Asahi Shimbun and Yomiuri Shimbun newspapers, Enryaku-ji faced a nationwide scandal; the temple was criticized by the Japan Buddhist Temple Association, which led a movement against the Yakuza.
On May 18, all representative directors of Enryaku-ji resigned, apologizing on their website and in e-mails which were sent to 3,000 branch temples. Glossary of Japanese Buddhism Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto List of Buddhist temples in Kyoto List of National Treasures of Japan List of National Treasures of Japan List of National Treasures of Japan List of National Treasures of Japan Tourism in Japan Guoqing Temple Ponsonby-Fane, Richard Arthur Brabazon.. Kyoto: The Old Capital of Japan, 794-1869. Kyoto: The Ponsonby Memorial Society. Official website Japan Atlas: Enryaku-Ji Temple Photos of Mount Hiei and the three precincts of Enryaku-ji Temple
National Treasure (Japan)
A National Treasure is the most precious of Japan's Tangible Cultural Properties, as determined and designated by the Agency for Cultural Affairs. A Tangible Cultural Property is considered to be of historic or artistic value, classified either as "buildings and structures" or as "fine arts and crafts." Each National Treasure must show outstanding workmanship, a high value for world cultural history, or exceptional value for scholarship. 20% of the National Treasures are structures such as castles, Buddhist temples, Shinto shrines, or residences. The other 80% are paintings; the items span the period of ancient to early modern Japan before the Meiji period, including pieces of the world's oldest pottery from the Jōmon period and 19th-century documents and writings. The designation of the Akasaka Palace in 2009 and of the Tomioka Silk Mill in 2014 added two modern, post-Meiji Restoration, National Treasures. Japan has a comprehensive network of legislation for protecting and classifying its cultural patrimony.
The regard for physical and intangible properties and their protection is typical of Japanese preservation and restoration practices. Methods of protecting designated National Treasures include restrictions on alterations and export, as well as financial support in the form of grants and tax reduction; the Agency for Cultural Affairs provides owners with advice on restoration and public display of the properties. These efforts are supplemented by laws that protect the built environment of designated structures and the necessary techniques for restoration of works. Kansai, the region of Japan's capitals from ancient times to the 19th century, has the most National Treasures. Fine arts and crafts properties are owned or are in museums, including national museums such as Tokyo and Nara, public prefectural and city museums, private museums. Religious items are housed in temples and Shinto shrines or in an adjacent museum or treasure house. Japanese cultural properties were in the ownership of Buddhist temples, Shinto shrines, aristocratic or samurai families.
Feudal Japan ended abruptly in 1867/68 when the Tokugawa shogunate was replaced by the Meiji Restoration. During the ensuing haibutsu kishaku triggered by the official policy of separation of Shinto and Buddhism and anti-Buddhist movements propagating the return to Shinto, Buddhist buildings and artwork were destroyed. In 1871, the government confiscated temple lands, considered symbolic of the ruling elite. Properties belonging to the feudal lords were expropriated, historic castles and residences were destroyed, an estimated 18,000 temples were closed. During the same period, Japanese cultural heritage was impacted by the rise of industrialization and westernization; as a result and Shinto institutions became impoverished. Temples decayed, valuable objects were exported. In 1871, the Daijō-kan issued a decree to protect Japanese antiquities called the Plan for the Preservation of Ancient Artifacts. Based on recommendations from the universities, the decree ordered prefectures and shrines to compile lists of important buildings and art.
However, these efforts proved to be ineffective in the face of radical westernisation. In 1880, the government allotted funds for the preservation of ancient temples. By 1894, 539 shrines and temples had received government funded subsidies to conduct repairs and reconstruction; the five-storied pagoda of Daigo-ji, the kon-dō of Tōshōdai-ji, the hon-dō of Kiyomizu-dera are examples of buildings that underwent repairs during this period. A survey conducted in association with Okakura Kakuzō and Ernest Fenollosa between 1888 and 1897 was designed to evaluate and catalogue 210,000 objects of artistic or historic merit; the end of the 19th century was a period of political change in Japan as cultural values moved from the enthusiastic adoption of western ideas to a newly discovered interest in Japanese heritage. Japanese architectural history began to appear on curricula, the first books on architectural history were published, stimulated by the newly compiled inventories of buildings and art. On June 5, 1897, the Ancient Temples and Shrines Preservation Law was enacted.
Formulated under the guidance of architectural historian and architect Itō Chūta, the law established government funding for the preservation of buildings and the restoration of artworks. The law applied to architecture and pieces of art relating to an architectural structure, with the proviso that historic uniqueness and exceptional quality were to be established. Applications for financial support were to be made to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the responsibility for restoration or preservation lay in the hands of local officials. Restoration works were financed directly from the national coffers. A second law was passed on December 15, 1897, that provided supplementary provisions to designate works of art in the possession of temples or shrines as "National Treasures"; the new law provided for pieces of religious architecture to be designated as a "Specially Protected Building"
Mount Kōya is the common name of a huge temple settlement in Wakayama Prefecture to the south of Osaka. In the strict sense, Kōya-san is the so-called "mountain name" sangō of the Kongōbu-Temple, the ecclesiastical headquarters of the "Koyasan Shingon School". First settled in 819 by the monk Kūkai, Mt. Kōya is known as the world headquarters of the Kōyasan Shingon sect of Japanese Buddhism. Located on an 800 m high plain amid eight peaks of the mountain, the original monastery has grown into the town of Kōya, featuring a university dedicated to religious studies and 120 sub-temples, many of which offer lodging to pilgrims; the mountain is home to the following famous sites: Kongōbu-ji, the head temple of the Kōyasan Shingon Buddhism. Located in the middle of the sanctuary, Kongobuji is colloquially known as "Kōyasan-Issan" meaning "the mountain of Kōya"; the temple was built by the warlord Hideyoshi Toyotomi for the mass of his mother. Named Seiganji, it was renamed Kongobuji in the Meiji Era.
Danjogaran, at the heartland of the Mt. Kōya settlement. Garan is a name for an area that has buildings, a main hall, several pagodas, a scripture storage, a bell tower, a lecture hall, other halls dedicated to important deities. Here we find a shrine dedicated to the Shintō-gods of that mountain area and in front of it an assembly hall. Danjō Garan is one of the two sacred spots around the Mount Kōya. Konpon Daitō, the "Basic Great Pagoda" that according to Shingon Buddhism doctrine represents the central point of a mandala covering all of Japan. Standing at 48.5 m tall and situated right in the middle of Koyasan, this pagoda was built as a seminary for the esoteric practices of Shingon Buddhism. This pagoda and the Okunoin Temple form a large sanctuary. Sannō-dō, an assembly hall for special ceremonies dedicated to the Shintō-gods guarding the area Okunoin, the mausoleum of Kūkai, surrounded by an immense graveyard Kōyasan chōishi-michi, the traditional route up the mountain with stone markers every 109 metres Daimon, the main gate for Mount Kōya.
This mammoth gate stands as the main entrance to Kōyasan. It is flanked on each side by Kongo warriors; the view from the front of the gate is magnificent and, on a clear day, can reach as far as the Seto Inland Sea. Tokugawa Family Tomb; this mausoleum was built by the third shogun Iemitsu Tokugawa. It is architecturally representative of the Edo Period. First Edo shogun Ieyasu is enshrined on the second shogun Hidetada on the left; the Structure is elaborately decorated with ample use of carvings and brass fittings. It houses a replica of the Nestorian steleIn 2004, UNESCO designated Mt. Kōya, along with two other locations on the Kii Peninsula and Omine; the complex includes a memorial hall and cemetery honoring Japanese who were imprisoned or executed for committing atrocities during World War II. Koya-san is accessible by the Nankai Electric Railway from Namba Station to Gokurakubashi Station at the base of the mountain. A cable car from Gokurakubashi whisks visitors to the top in 5 minutes.
The entire trip takes about 1.5 hours on 2 hours by non-express. Local automobile traffic can be heavy on weekends until well into the evening. On weekdays, the mountain offers a pleasant drive followed by the excitement upon reaching the monasteries lining the summit. Many Buddhist monasteries on the mountain function as hotels for visitors providing traditional accommodation with an evening meal and breakfast. Guest are invited to participate in the morning services. Koyasan Reihōkan Mount Ōmine Tourism in Japan Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage Routes in the Kii Mountain Range KONGOBUJI（金剛峰寺） Mt. Koya-san JAPAN: the Official Guide Koyasan Tourist Association Photo set of the Okunoin cemetery of Koyasan Nicoloff, Philip L.. Sacred Koyasan: A pilgrimage to the Mountain Temple of Saint Kōbō Daishi and the Great Sun Buddha. State University of New York Press. ISBN 978-0-7914-7259-0
In Japanese architecture a mokoshi "skirt storey" or "cuff storey", is a decorative pent roof surrounding a building below the true roof. Since it does not correspond to any internal division, the mokoshi gives the impression of there being more floors than there are, it is a ken deep and is most seen in Buddhist temples and pagodas. The mokoshi covers a hisashi, a walled aisle surrounding a building on one or more sides, but can be attached directly to the core of the structure, in which case there is no hisashi; the roofing material for the mokoshi can be the different as in the main roof. The name derives from the fact that it surrounds and hides the main building like the cuff of a pair of pants, its purpose was in fact to hide the thick sustaining pillars of the structure, making it look lighter and simpler. It has been used extensively by the Zen sects in various structures of its temple complexes. Another name for a mokoshi is yuta, hence the name yuta-zukuri given to the style of a building featuring it.
This name started being used during the Middle Ages, stems from the idea that its presence offered protection from snow. The three storied east pagoda of Yakushi-ji seems to have six stories because of the presence of a mokoshi between each story; the first of the kon-dō's two stories at Hōryū-ji has a mokoshi, added in the Nara period with extra posts. These were needed to hold up the original first roof, which extended more than four meters past the building. Hōryū-ji's is the oldest extant example of mokoshi; the butsuden of a Zen temple has a mokoshi, therefore looks like a two-story building, although in fact it is not. The following structures all have a mokoshi