Thursday, January 12, 2012

Shikoku 88 Temple 5 Jizoji

Temple number 5, in Itano Town, enshrines Jizo, an immensely popular deity in Japan. The temple itself is nothing special. many of the buildings date from the 18th century as it was, like so many other, burnt down by Chosokabe in the 16th century.

The Nio were rather nice and unusual, both in their style and coloration. It is easy to see the Hindu roots.....

The founding legend states that the temple was founded by Kukai (Kobo Daishi) in the early 9th century.

Behind the temple on the hillside is a huge U-shaped hall housing hundreds of statues. If you are walking the pilgrimage trail you come to this hall first before reaching the temple proper. The left hand hall houses statues of the 500 disciples of the Buddha, each with quite a different expression.

The other side contains many statues of bodhisattvas.

I revisited Jizo-ji many years later while wqlking the Shikoku Fudo Myo pilgrimage. photos from this visit can be seen here.


  1. The statues are just amazing. A super place.


  2. I can't find much info about Chosokabe. Why did he/they burn down all the temples?

  3. Hi Alex..... warring states period..... I believe it was Motochika Chosokabe who took over all of Shikoku. temples were political sites. I believe he later repented and founded some temples but I have to read up some more...

  4. Some great pictures and I always love the cool Nio Guardians.

    Japan Australia