183 Kominato, Amatsukominato-machi,
Awa-gun, Chiba 299-55
Tanjo-ji Temple is the place where Nichiren Shonin was born. This is a solemn, sacred place located in Kominato, in Southern Chiba, surrounded by the Pacific Ocean. Nichiren Shonin was born in 1222 to Nukina Jiro Shigetada (father) and Umegiku (mother). Legend has it that in celebration of his birth, lotus flowers bloomed on the seashore, red snapper gathered, and spring water gushed out into the yard of the house. These places are now preserved as Renge-ga-fuchi, Tae-no-ura, and Tanjo-ido. Nichiren Shonin's mother dreamed that the sun entered her body when she became pregnant, and named their son Zen-nichi-maro, meaning "Boy with the Good Sun." After Nichiren Shonin proclaimed his new path of Buddhism, he continued his mission in Kamakura. But in January of 1264 he learned that his mother was ill and returned to his hometown. He inscribed a mandala and prayed for his mothers recovery. Because of his great merits, his mothers life was extended for another four years. In October of 1276, Nichike, a second generation senior disciple, built a temple on the grounds where Nichiren Shonin's parents' home had stood. The patron of this temple was named Sakuma-Hyogo-no-kami Shigetada. The temple was originally located where the present Tae-no-ura site; however, in August 1498, the temple was destroyed by a tsunami. The temple was rebuilt, but again was destroyed by a tsunami in November 1703. During the Hoei Period (1704-1710), Nichiko restored the temple at its current location. At that time, a local lord donated property to enlarge the temple grounds and the temples name was changed to its current one. In 1758, all of the structures were destroyed by a fire that left only the Nio-mon gate standing. In 1842, Nissen rebuilt the current Soshi-do.
The Pilgrims getting ready for entry to Tanjo-Ji. The group would enter with pilgrim coats on and chanting Odaimoku. Below the group is getting ready for their formal shot in front of the main gate to the Temple.
This is statue of Nichiren Shonin as a child. After walking past the famous statue we would go into the treasure house / museum of Tanjo-Ji and be taken on a tour by one of the ministers of the Temple. Our tour assistant would help with translating.
Our tour assistant standing in front of a picture of a roof end tile of the building that we are currently in (The Shoshido or Founders hall). The picture is life size to give you an idea of the size of this tile. It was part of a campaign to replace the tiles on this roof. We would descend into the basement of the Temple where an exhibit of the Buddha's life was on display.
We then went into the Hondo (main hall) of Tanjo-Ji. Above and Below.
We took a few minutes to pray at this sacred temple.
We then visited the garden on the side of the Hondo building. After viewing the beauty of the surrounding garden we would be taken to a room were emperors once were housed when visiting the temple complex.
In front of the Hondo after the tour. The bridge (looks like stairs in this picture) through the gate leads back to the Shoshido (founders hall) and the treasure house / museum. The roof tile seen earlier can be seen on the Shoshido building.
Time for Lunch at the local restaurant on the Temple grounds.
On the path leading back to the gate. Below some last minute shopping before getting back on the bus. You can see the Nio-mon gate just at the top of the stairs in the background.