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Kaikozan Butsugen-ji Temple

Major Temples

Address:
2-30 Monomigaoka Ito-shi Shizuoka-ken

Direction:
JR Ito-sen Ito-eki -> Bus for Shimota/Atsukawa ->
Ohara-machi stop -> 5 minutes on foot

JR Ito-sen Ito-eki -> Bus Arai-sen Butsugen-ji stop ->
10 minutes on foot (There are stone steps to climb.)

click small photo to enlarge


Click small photo to enlarge.

Butsugen-ji is closely related to Izu Persecution. This is the place where Nichiren Shonin was exiled, and this temple is also known as the place where his Zuishin-butsu rests. Nearby beach there is the famous Manaita-iwa (Chopping board rock), where Nichiren Shonin was deserted to die by raising ocean water, and the couple, who rescued Nichiren Shonin, Funamori Yasaburo and his wife rest at Renkei-ji Temple in the same region.

Spring of 1261, Nichiren Shonin returned to Kamakura from Shimousa, but he was captured and sent away to Izu. He convinced his disciple Nichiro not to accompany him and went on a boat to be taken away on May 21.

The boat arrived at a bank called Kawana in Ito. Yasaburo and his wife took Nichiren Shonin in secretly and served on him. Eventually Nichiren Shonin was sent to the local tax official, Sukemitsu Ito to be kept under the watchful eye. However Sukemitsu turned to Nichiren-shu when his illness was cured by Nichiren Shonin's prayer. He also present the statue of the Buddha discovered in ocean. Nichiren Shonin treasured and worshiped this statue as his Zuishin-butsu.

The beginning (Engi): Sukemitsu Ito had Bishamon-do built for Nichiren Shonin to protect him from the evil. Nichiren Shonin had lived in Bishamon-do while he was exiled in Ito. Butusgen-ji was built where Bishamon-do once stood.

Nichiren Shonin wrote "Shion-sho" and "Kyoki Jikoku-sho" at this site.

The current condition: Sanmon (the main gate) was built in late Tokugawa-era (mid 19th century.) Soshi-do (the founder's hall) and new Bishamon-do were built in 1951 to commemorate the 750 Anniversary of Nichiren Shonin's birth.

Story about Nichiren Shonin's Zuishin-butsu
June of 1261, when Nichiren Shonin was exiled to Ito, something on the bed of ocean nearby was shining day or night. People were afraid of it as the precursor of some incident. People threw the net into the ocean to catch the object, and the golden colored standing statue of the Buddha was brought up to the shore. Jito (the local tax officer) Sukemitsu Ito happened to be suffering from unknown illness and he asked Nichiren Shonin's prayer. Then he got instantaneously cured, and this caused him to become a follower of Nichiren Shonin. He also presented this golden Buddha from the ocean bed. Nichiren Shonin cherished this Buddha and carried it with him for the rest of his life.

The most devoted practitioner of the Lotus Sutra in Japan
Nichiren Shonin had realized the relationship between the Lotus Sutra and himself while he was exiled in Izu. Accordingly through Izu Persecution Nichiren Shonin experienced himself what the Lotus Sutra stated. He had reached to the conclusion that the merit of the Lotus Sutra would lead one to repay the four essential favors: every sentient being, the ruler, one's parents and Three Treasures (Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha) - "Shion-sho." He also realized that he himself was the one to recognize the enemies of Hoke-kyo in Japan - "Kyoki Jikoku-sho" .

Minobu-San Kuonji Temple | Kominato-Zan Tanjoji Temple | Senko-Zan Seichoji Temple
Ganbon-Zan Jissoji Temple  | Shochu-Zan Hokekyoji Temple | Kaiko-Zan Butsugenji Temple 
Komatsubara-Zan Kyoninji Temple | Jakko-Zan Ryukoji Temple

The Nichiren Buddhist International Center, 29490 Mission Blvd. Hayward, California 94544, U.S.A.
Telephone: 510-690-1222 , Fax: 510-690-1221

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