Kojo (priest) (光定 (僧))

Kojo (779 - September 24, 858) was a priest of the Tendai sect early in the Heian period. His family name as a common person was Nie. He was born in Kazahaya District, Iyo Province. He was also called Betto Daishi.

He studied under Saicho, the founder of the Tendai sect of Japan, and learned 'Makashikan' (Mahayana Practice of Cessation and Contemplation) under Gishin. In 810, in Konkomyoe (annual assembly on Konkomyo-kyo (Golden Light Sutra)) held within the Imperial Court, he received his imperial order and entered the Buddhist priesthood. In 812, his kanjo (a ceremony to be the successor) was held by Kukai. After that, on one hand, he made religious arguments against Gien and others in Nara Kofuku-ji Temple as one to represent Saicho's will, while on the other hand he busied himself in establishing Daijo-Kaidan (Mahayana ordination center) at Enryaku-ji Temple. After that, the appointment of nenbundo sha (a fixed number of persons allowed the ordination into priesthood) of the Tendai sect as a national kokushi (instructor) and dokushi (reader) was accepted. In 854, he assumed the position of betto (chief priest) of Enryaku-ji Temple.

[Original Japanese]