Monday, April 5, 2021

Honzoin Temple 55 of the Kyushu Pilgrimage


Honzoin is a very small, urban temple in downtown Kumamoto and number 55 on the Kyushu Pilgrimage  Its honzon is a Fudo Myoo, but I did not get into the main hall to see it. However there were multiple small Fudo statues in the grounds.

The Daishido was a simple, modern, concrete structure that was open. There was also a statue of Kobo daishi outside. The temple has been here since the 1930's but its origin lie with Mount Aso and Shugendo.

Mount Aso was a major shugendo center, and there were 37 sub temples scattered around the mountain as well as a main temple that was connected to the main shrine of the mountain. These were Tendai temples, and the other two major shugendo centers on yushu, Hikosan and Kunisaki, were also Tendai based. On Honshu the most dominant form of shugendo was Shingon related.

On early Meiji shugendo was outlawed and all of the temples on Aso wete closed down. One however moved to Kumamoto and converted to Shingon and then a few decades later moved again to its current location.

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