Showing posts with label haibutsu kishaku. Show all posts
Showing posts with label haibutsu kishaku. Show all posts

Thursday, April 1, 2021

Kongoji Temple 56 on the Kyushu Pilgrimage


Kongoji is a small, urban temple in downtown Kumamoto. Like all the temples on the Kyushu 88 (108) temple pilgrimage it belongs to the Shingon sect. The konzon is an 11-faced Kannon.

The temple was originally built at the end of the 16th century and was located NE of Kumamoto castle. It was the Urakimon, or "rear" kimon for the castle. The Kimon is often called the demon gate as it protects a site from the evil forces that approach from the NE. Enryakuji temple protecting Kyoto is the most famous example, though most castles had temples that were kimon.

The temple was moved to its current location in the early Meiji period due to the Haibutsu Kishaku, the anti-Buddhist campaign of the period that was more violent in some areas than others. Like anything with a negative connotation, it is usually not talked about much in Japan.

Its current form is obviously quite recent as it is all concrete, and like quite a few temples in cities, raised up to allow parking underneath the building.