Hoan Kokei (蒲庵古渓)

Kokei HOAN (1532 - March 5, 1597) was a Rinzai Sect Buddhist monk who lived during the Azuchi-Momoyama period. His was born into the Asakura clan. He originated from Echizen Province. He was also known as Daiji Osho Zenji. Another of his aliases was Sochin KOKEI.

He entered the Buddhist priesthood and studied at Ashikaga School in Shimotsuke Province before studying under Koin Soken of Daitoku-ji Temple in Kyoto. In 1573, to inherit the Buddhist teachings of Sokin SHUREI, he moved from Nanshu-ji Temple in Sakai City to serve as the head priest of Daitoku-ji Temple in Kyoto. On this occasion, he received a congratulatory gift from SEN no Rikyu who he met during his time in Sakai City. After Nobunaga ODA was killed at the Honnoji Coup in 1582, Kokei conducted a memorial service marking the 100th day after Nobunaga's death by Rikyu's request, and also served as officiating monk during Nobunaga's funeral which was held by Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI.

In 1583, he founded the Soken-in sub-temple at Daitoku-ji Temple and in the following year, 1584, was charged with the construction of the Tensho-ji Temple planned by Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI to pray for the soul of Nobunaga ODA. However, he fell into disfavor with Hideyoshi as a result of a conflict with Mitsunari ISHIDA and was exiled to Hakata in Kyushu in 1588. He returned to Kyoto with the assistance of SEN no Rikyu and served as officiating monk at Hidenaga TOYOTOMI's funeral in 1591, but was held responsible for an incident that began with the enshrinement of a wooden statue of SEN no Rikyu within the sanmon gate of Daitoku-ji Temple and resulted in SEN no Rikyu committing suicide by disembowelment. The enraged Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI attempted to have Daitoku-ji Temple demolished but it was said that Kokei stood in the path of the messenger and attempted to kill himself using a short sword, which led Hideyoshi to panic and recall the envoy. He lived out his final years in retirement at Joraku-in Temple in Ichihara in northern Kyoto.

[Original Japanese]