Jiin Sho-Hatto (寺院諸法度)

Jiin Sho-Hatto is a general term for a set of regulations that applied to the Buddhist religious community in the Tokugawa Shogunate in the Edo period. However, as there is no fixed proper name, several names such as 'Shoshu Jiin Hatto' (Acts Relating to the Temples of Each Sect) and 'Shoshu Sho-honzan Hatto' (Acts Relating to the Head Temple of Each Sect) have also been used formally.

While the Edo bakufu (the Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun) adopted a policy to respect Confucianism, particularly Neo-Confucianism, it promulgated the Jiin Sho-Hatto for Buddhist priests belonging to each sect with the aim of controlling those priests, as well as approving the ownership of temple estates and promoting the maintenance of Buddhist temples.

In relation to the Zen sect, following acts were each promulgated one by one.
Sotoshu Hatto (Act for the Soto sect), 1612
Chokkyo shie no Hatto (Act prohibiting the Imperial Court from granting purple Buddhist robes to high-rank priests), 1613
Gozan-Jissatsu Shozan Hatto (Act for the five first-class temples, ten second-class temples and many third-class temples), 1615
Myoshinji Hatto (Act for Myoshin-ji Temple), 1615
Eiheiji Hatto (Act for Eihei-ji Temple), 1615
Daitokuji Hatto (Act for Daitoku-ji Temple), 1615
Sojiji Hatto (Act for Soji-ji Temple), 1615

With the promulgation of Gozan-Jissatsu Shozan Hatto, the traditional posts of 'Rokuon Soroku' (the highest-ranking priest responsible for taking charge of managing personal affairs, ranking temples and other duties) and 'Inryoshiki' (officer of correspondence between Shogun and Soroku) were abolished, and instead a new post of 'Konchiin Soroku' (Soroku of Konchi-in sub temple of Nanzen-ji Temple) was established by appointing Suden of Kokui no saisho (a priest who has influence in politics) to the post in 1619. Initially, the Edo bakufu tried to control the entire Zen sect through this new Soroku, although the leadership had a direct effect only on the Gozan-ha (group of five first-class temples in Zen sect). After the death of Suden, the jisha-bugyo (magistrate of temples and shrines), which was established in 1635, took charge of the management of temples, with the result that the authority of the Soroku was further reduced. Basically, the Soroku position evolved into that of Furegashira (post dealing with orders and negotiation arising from the jisha-bugyo) of the Gozan-ha.

With the enactment of Jiin Sho-Hatto to control the priests, the Edo bakufu also established 'Terauke seido' (the system of organizing whole temples in Japan with the registration of follower families) and 'Honmatsu seido' (the system of head and branch temples) aiming to firmly control Buddhism.

[Original Japanese]