Saturday, June 4, 2011

Daigo-ji Temple - Kyoto

Daigo-ji is a Shingon Buddhist temple in Fushimi-ku, Kyoto, Japan. The main image (honzon) is Yakushi. Daigo, literally "ghee," is used figuratively to mean "crème de la crème" and is a metaphor of the most profound part of Buddhist thoughts.
Daigo-ji was founded in the early Heian period. In 874, Rigen-daishi (Shōbō) founded the temple.
After having fallen ill and abdicated in 930, Emperor Daigo entered Buddhist priesthood at this temple. As a monk, he took the Buddhist name Hō-kongō; and shortly thereafter, died at the age of 46. He was buried in the temple, which is why his posthumous name was Daigo.
Several structures, including the kondō and the five-story pagoda, are National Treasures of Japan. The temple possesses 18 specifically designated national treasures, including the buildings and other works as well; and the temple holds several dozen important cultural assets.
As part of the "Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto," it is included a World Heritage Site.
The five-story pagoda at Daigoji temple was built in 951 and is the oldest building in Kyoto. It was one of few buildings to survive the Onin War in the 15th century.
More than seven centuries after its founding, Toyotomi Hideyoshi held a famous cherry-blossom-viewing party in 1598 at the Sambō-in sub-temple.
The bright colors of maple leaves attract tourists and others in the Autumn season. Emperor Suzaku's mausoleum, known as Daigo no misasagi, is located near Daigo-ji.
On August 24, 2008, the Juntei Kannon-dō at the top of the hill on the east of the temple burned. It stood in the Kami Daigo part of the temple. Kami Daigo is Number 11 in the 33 temples of the Kansai Kannon Pilgrimage. The structure dated from 1968.



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