Jusanbutsu shinko (Thirteen Buddha belief) (十三仏信仰)

Jusanbutsu shinko refers to the belief in Juo, ten kings, who are judges in Meido hell including Enma-o (the King of Hell) who were created in Japan based on the Juo-shinko (ten Kings (ten Judges of Hell) belief) and in buddhas, according to the Honji-suijaku setsu (theory of original reality and manifested traces), whose present forms are judges who conduct the later trials (the sixth, the twelfth, and the 32nd anniversaries).

Jusanbutsu and their corresponding judges

It is said that these buddhas act as lawyers just as in a trial at the court.

A memorial service on the seventh day after death Fudo Myoo (Shinko-o (the first judge of Ju-o))

A memorial service on the Fourteenth Day Shaka Nyorai (Shoko-o (the second judge of Ju-o))

A memorial service on the Twenty-First Day Monju Bosatsu (Sotei-o (the third judge of Ju-o))

A memorial service on the Twenty-Eighth Day Fugen Bosatsu (Gokan-o (the fourth judge of Ju-o))

A memorial service on the Thirty-Fifth Day Jizo Bosatsu (Enma-o (the King of Hell))

A memorial service on the Forty-Second Day Miroku Bosatsu (Henjo-o (the sixth judge of Ju-o))

A memorial service on the Forty-Ninth Day Yakushi Nyorai (Taizan-o (the seventh judge of Ju-o))

A memorial service on the One Hundred Day Kanzeon Bosatsu (Byodo-o (the eighth judge of Ju-o))

The first anniversary of death Seishi Bosatsu (Toshi-o (the ninth judge of Ju-o))

The second anniversary of death Amidanyorai (Godotenrin-o (the tenth judge of Ju-o))

The sixth anniversary of death Ashuku-nyorai (Rengeo, lotus king)

The twelfth anniversary of death Dainichinyorai (Gion-o (the second judge after Ju-o))

The 32nd anniversary of death Kokuzo Bosatsu (Hokai-o (the third judge after Ju-o))

(*1) Since the date of death is counted in the first year, the third year is actually the second year when it is counted from the year of death. The sixth, the twelfth, and the 32nd anniversaries are also counted in the same way.

(*2) '閦: Shuku' is a machine dependent character.


Eight buddhas listed in Jusanbutsu buddhas join as guardian Buddhas of the Oriental zodiac.
Matching buddhas for each Oriental zodiac are as follows:

Rat - Kanzeon Bosatsu (*3)
Ox - Kokuzo Bosatsu
Tiger - Kokuzo Bosatsu
Hare - Monju Bosatsu
Dragon - Fugen Bosatsu
Serpent - Fugen Bosatsu
Horse - Seishi Bosatsu
Sheep - Dainichinyorai
Monkey - Dainichinyorai
Cock - Fudo Myoo
Dog - Amidanyorai
Boar - Amidanyorai
(*3) Actually, this kannon is not a general Kanzeon Bosatsu, that is, 'Sho Kannon' but 'Senju Kannon,' one of 'Henge Kannons' (the transformations in which Kannon (Deity of Mercy) appears in order to save sentient beings) called 'Roku Kannon,' but here 'Kanzeon Bosatsu' is daringly used as all Henge Kannons are said to be an incarnations of Sho Kannon.

[Original Japanese]