About Enkouji Temple

History & Temple Treasures

In 1601, the Shogun Ieyasu Tokugawa built Enkouji Temple in Fushimi, Kyoto as an educational institution. He invited Zen Priest Genkitsu (Kanshitsu) Sanyo, the 9th Headmaster of the Ashikaga School in Shimotsuke (a region near Tokyo), to be its first Headmaster. Enkouji Temple School was opened to the general public and not exclusively to Buddist monks. The temple published numerous books including “The School Sayings of Confucious” and “Essentials of the Zhenguan Period Government”. These books are known as the Fushimi editions or the Enkouji editions. The 50,000 original wooden printing blocks used for publishing these books are preserved at the temple today and are known as the oldest such blocks in Japan.Legend has it that the famous sculptor, Unkei, produced the principal image of the temple, “The Kannon”, a Bodhisattva with a thousand arms. The Enkouji collection also boasts two important cultural properties, a statue of its founder, Genkitsu and a pair of six-fold screen paintings of bamboo forests by the master painter, Ohkyo Maruyama.
Beyond the temple gate, there is a Honryutei, a Karesansui zen garden. Past the garden lies the inner gate leading to the Jyugyu no Niwa, a garden known for its beautiful autumn colors. Seiryu-chi, the oldest pond in northern Kyoto, is paired with the delicate natural sound of a Suikinkutsu, a Japanese garden ornament, to create the sublime stillness of these temple grounds.

Principal image of the Buddha (sculpted by Unkei)

Statue of Zen Master Genkitsu (Important Cultural Property)

Enkouji Temple woodcut printing type (Fushimi-style) (Important Cultural Property)

Bamboo in Wind and Rain, paper and ink painting by Maruyama Okyo (Important Cultural Property)

Jurojin, God of Longevity, Under A Pine Tree by Watanabe Shiko (Important Cultural Property)

Please feel free to email us at keikan-enkouji@nifty.com, if you have any questions regarding:
Zen meditation, uses of Zen practice hall and Tea house, on-location shooting,
secondary-use of pictures of Enkouji, opening hours, and so forth.

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