Chion-in Temple, Kyoto
Chion-in was founded in1234 as the headquarters of the Jōdo-shū (Pure Land Sect) of Buddhism. The main gate, called Sanmon, was constructed in 1621, and it stands the 79 feet tall and 164 feet wide, making it one of the largest wooden tower gates remaining in Japan. Other important buildings include the Seishidō (Seishi Hall), built in 1530; the Gobyō (Mausoleum), which was completed in 1613; the Ōhōjō (Large Guest House), built in 1641; Kyōzō (Sutra Repository), constructed in 1621; Kohōjō (Small Guest House), built in 1641; the 70-ton Ōgane (Large Bell), cast in 1636; and the Daishōrō (Great Bell Tower), built in 1678.
Visitors can view the grounds and historic buildings for free, but it costs 400 Yen to see the gardens.
Chionin Temple is the head temple of the Jodo sect of Buddhism. The Sanmon Gate of Chionin is the largest in Japan and was built in the 17th century. The Amida Hall beside the hondo houses a beautiful golden statue of Buddha. On the opposite side of the hondo are stairs leading to a few other buildings, which house a giant Buddha head and other statues.
The temple grounds are free. The "seven treasures of Chion-in Temple" cost 500 yen to see.
As the head temple of the Jodo (Pure Land) sect of Buddhism, Chion-in (or Chionin) in Kyoto is one of the most important sacred sites in Japan.
Pure Land Buddhism was founded in 1175 by the priest Honen, Chionin Temple was built in 1234 on the site where Honen fasted to death in 1212.
Due to earthquakes and fires, most of the present buildings date from the 17th century.
Its two-story San-mon (main gate, built in 1619) is Japan's largest temple gate at standing at 24 meters.
Chionin's temple bell (cast in 1633) is the heaviest in Japan, at 74 tons. It takes 17 monks to ring it at the New Year ceremony.
The corridor behind the Main Hall, which leads to the Assembly Hall, is an uguisu-bari (nightingale floor). This type of floor is constructed to "sing" at every footstep to warn the monks of intruders. You can walk underneath the corridor to examine the way the boards and nails are placed to create this inventive burglar alarm.
In October 2002, Chion-in Temple was used in the filming of the Tom Cruise movie The Last Samurai. It was standing in for Edo Castle.
Admission fee is ¥400
Chion-in was built in 1234 on the site where a famous priest named Honen had taught and eventually fasted to death.
The oldest of the present buildings date back to the 17th century. The two-storey Sanmon, a Buddhist temple gate at the main entrance, is the largest temple gate in Japan. The immence main hall contains an image of Honen. In another hall stands a statue of Amida Buddha, which is glowing in the darkness.
Most of the building of this temple are very large and impressive, but there are bus loads of tourists, some of the buses even stopping within the temple compound.
Open 9 am - 16.10 pm to enter the Hojo Garden
Entry: free (Yen 400 to enter the Hojo Garden)
I found this temple quite by accident, while wandering around the Maruyama Park area.
Chion-in Temple is a Jodo Shu temple, the second-largest sect of Buddhism, and quite dignified and magnificent. It consists of a number of buildings and even has national treasures within its walls - namely a portrait of Honen Shonin, founder of Jodo Shu.
Entrance to the temple is through a very grand 79 feet and 2 storey Sanmon. One of the oldest standing building is the Hondo (Main Hall) dating back from 1633.
One special feature of Chion-in Temple is the corridor leading from the Main Hall to the Assembly Hall. It is a uguisu-bari (nightingale floor), constructed in such a way that the wooden floor will "sing" (creak actually) at every footstep warning of intruders. (Nijo Castle also has this security feature).
Chion in is the headquarters of the pure land sect of buddhism and was founded in 1234. Its one of Kyoto's most active temples
This is the Chion-in, another large complex of building and temples. This one dated back to the 13th century with the Sanmon as the main gate (image 1) and Mieido (image 2) and other sites here.
As the head temple of the Jodo (Pure Land) sect of Buddhism, Chion-in is one of the most important sacred sites in Japan.