The Rokuharamitsu-ji Temple is a Shingon Buddhist temple attached to the Chisan sect. It is one of the 33 temples in western Japan that issues amulets. In 963 it was built by Emperor Daigo’s son Kuya Shonin due to the plague that was rampaging through Kyoto at the time. In the later Heian period (794–1185)it became a base for the powerful Heike family’s army, and with both Taira no Kiyomori and thus a large amount of mansions and military headquarters were built here, with over 5000 people living here. There are many graves to unknown Kiyomori family members here, and many important cultural properties enshrined as well. In 1183 it was burned except for the main hall. It has been through many disasters, but the current main hall has been there since 1363.
The Buddha statue emerging from the mouth, Kuya Shonin’s statue
One of the temple’s famous items is the standing statue of Kuya Shonin. It is said that as Kuya chanted the name of Buddha, 6 Amidas appeared from his mouth, and so on the statue there are 6 tiny Amidas appearing from his mouth. Each one represents a different "Namuamidabutsu" (a sincere proclamation of faith in the Amitabha). Also enshrined is a statue of the eleven-faced goddess of mercy that Kuya himself made, and a number of other images including ones from the Kamakura Period (1185–1333). The treasure hall is open 8:30～17:00 and last admission is at 16:30.
There are also priests chanting sutras while chanting, which is said to aid with sickness, and this is designated as important intangible cultural heritage. They do this dance starting from 12/13 until the end of the year, 30 minutes after the sun begins to set. There is also a tea ceremony held from 1/1-1/3 based on an ancient legend that the priests here healed a sickness that Emperor Murakami suffered from by praying for him and serving him tea.
From Kyoto Station (京都駅) take a bus to Kiyomizu-michi (清水道) and it’s 7 minutes. You can take the Keihan line to Kiyomizu-gojou Station (清水五条駅) and walk 7 minutes as well. On the Hankyu line go to Kawaramachi Station (清水五条駅) and walk 15 minutes. There is no parking lot so it’s highly recommended you come by public transit. Kennin-ji temple is right nearby so it’s recommended you see that as well while you’re here.
Image Gallery: Rokuharamitsu-ji Temple
Description: Rokuharamitsu-ji Temple
|Sights||Rokuharamitsu-ji Temple (六波羅蜜寺)|
81-1 Rokurocho, Higashiyama-ku, Kyoto 605-0000, Kyoto Prefecture
|Phone / Fax||Phone: 075-561-6980|
|Admission Fee||Pay admission: 600yen|
Spring (March - May)Summer (June - August) Autumn (September - November) Winter (December - February)
|Recommended target||Family Couples Groups Infant & Toddler (ages 0-6) Child (ages 7-17) Adult (ages 20+) Single traveller|