The Daigo School of the Shingon Sect (真言宗醍醐派)

The Daigo school of the Shingon sect, one of the Shingon Buddhist sects of Japan, belongs to the Kogi Shingon (Old Shingon) school. The head temple is Daigo-ji Temple.

The sect was founded by Kobo Daishi (a posthumous title of the priest Kukai). The school was founded by Rigen Daishi (Shobo, the Great Master of Holy Treasures). The restorer was Gien, who was given the title Jugo.

Shumon (the crest of the sect)

Goshichi no kiri (literally, five-seven paulownia) (in customary use)

The status of related Buddhist temples (in random order)

The head temple: Daigo-ji Temple (Fushimi Ward, Kyoto City)

Daihonzan (the main temples): Sanbo-in (in the precincts of Daigo-ji Temple Fushimi Ward, Kyoto City), Tenporin-ji Temple (Gose City, Nara Prefecture), Saigokuji-Temple (Onomichi City, Hiroshima Prefecture), Doryu-ji Temple (Tadotsu-cho, Kagawa Prefecture)

Bekkaku-honzan (special head temples): Kongoo-in (Fushimi Ward, Kyoto City), Risho-in Temple (in the precincts of Daigo-ji Temple), Hoon-in (in the precincts of Daigo-ji Temple), Muryoju-in (in the precincts of Daigo-ji Temple), Honsen-ji Temple (Shinagawa Ward, Tokyo), Shiofune Kannon (Ome City, Tokyo), Daimyoo-in Temple (Takatsu Ward, Kawasaki City), Eian-ji Temple (Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture), Hokai-ji Temple (Fushimi Ward, Kyoto City), Kontai-ji Temple (Wazuka-cho, Kyoto Prefecture), Matsuo-dera Temple (Yamatokoriyama City, Nara Prefecture), Senko-ji Temple (Heguri-cho, Ikoma County, Nara Prefecture), Ryusen-ji Temple (Tenkawa-mura, Nara Prefecture), Ryuge-ji Temple (Sera-cho, Hiroshima Prefecture), Toharamitsu-ji Temple (Mitoyo City, Kagawa Prefecture), and Nishiyamakoryu-ji Temple (Saijo City, Ehime Prefecture)

Jun-bekkaku-honzan (associate head temple): Dosen-ji Temple (Mimasaka City, Okayama Prefecture)
Branch temples
Local temples

The history of the Daigo school of the Shingon sect starts with the foundation of Daigo-ji Temple. Shobo carved statues of Juntei Kannon and Nyoirin Kannon and deified them at the top of Mt. Miyuki, which became the origin of Daigo-ji Temple. The Imperial Household had asked Shobo to make prayers for Emperor Daigo and Emperor Suzaku before they were born, and when the babies were born safe and healthy the Imperial Family became a supporter of the temple. The temples buildings have developed since then, forming the basis of the present Daigo-ji Temple.

In the Heian period, when the regency government was at its peak of prosperity, the protection of the Imperial Family grew weaker. At the time of the cloister government, the Uda-Genji and Murakami-Genji (the Minamoto clan), which belonged to the line of Emperor Daigo, were instrumental in preserving the finances and personnel of Daigo-ji Temple; they expanded the temple buildings and halls, and produced abbots for the temple.

Monks there eagerly studied the Ono school, one of the "jiso" teachings of Shingon (a method of ceremony and practice in Shingon Esoteric Buddhism). It was known as the central temple for the study of jiso, especially Buddhist iconology.

During the Onin War, it lost many of its buildings and declined for a while, but thanks to friendly relations with the Toyotomi clan and Gien, the abbot in those days, its temples were built and a full-scale restoration was done with financial aid from the clan.

With the advent of the Meiji period, it returned its temple estates and privileges to the government and declined, but because the preservation of cultural properties had become highly valued its temple buildings were maintained and the treasures that the temple owned were preserved.

It was the temple that controlled the Shingon Shugendo (Japanese mountain asceticism-shamanism incorporating Shinto and Buddhist concepts). When it was decided to discontinue temples for Shugendo monasteries (Shugendo is Japanese mountain asceticism/shamanism incorporating Shinto and Buddhist concepts) in the Meiji period, Daigo-ji Temple founded a section called Ein-bu within it and controlled the Shugendo monasteries; however, in 1919 it discontinued Ein-bu and made them into branch temples.

The temple came under the umbrella of To-ji Temple in 1879, and Daigo-ji Temple and Sanbo-in had their names on the lists of Jogaku-ji (a limited number of private temples protected by officials) and main head temples, but they became independent and publicly declared the Daigo School of the Shingon Sect in 1905.

During the Pacific War, the Kogi Shingon (Old Shingon) sect and the Shingi Shingon (New Shingon) sect were combined and united with the Dai-Shingon sect (literally, the Great Shingon sect) due to the government's policy on religion. In 1946, it became independent from the Great Shingon sect, declaring itself as the Daigo School of the Shingon Sect, and has continued to the present day.

Religious affairs organization

The chief abbot (a person who is simultaneously the abbot of Daigo-ji Temple and the monzeki (historically, a noble or an imperial prince appointed as the chief priest) of Sanbo-in)
The temple office (set up within Daigo-ji Temple)
The head of the temple office
The head of the executors
Shigyo (executors)
General Affairs Department (with a department director, a secretary and a clerk)
Educational Department (with a department director, a secretary and a clerk)
Finance Department (with a department director, a secretary and a clerk)
Committee of the Daigo School of the Shingon Sect
It consists of ten elective members and two specially appointed members (totaling 12 people). Their tenure is four years.

Local religious affairs
The branches' temple offices (Hokkaido, northern Yamagata Prefecture, southern Yamagata Prefecture, Niigata Prefecture, Yamanashi Prefecture, Shizuoka Prefecture, eastern Mikawa area, western Mikawa area, Owari area, Gifu Prefecture, Mie Prefecture, Kyoto Prefecture, Nara Prefecture, Osaka Prefecture, Hyogo Prefecture, Bizen area, Bicchu area, Mimasaka area, Hiroshima Prefecture, Yamaguchi Prefecture, Tottori Prefecture, Shimane Prefecture, Kochi Prefecture, Kagawa Prefecture, Ehime Prefecture, Fukuoka Prefecture, Oita Prefecture, Kumamoto Prefecture, Hizen area)
Branches under the direct control Daigo-ji Temple (including branches abroad)

Buddhist monks' rank (there are 15 ranks) and Buddhist evangelists

The word inside the second set of parentheses shows the color of religious vestment.
First rank: Dai sojo (the highest position, upper grade)(cardinal)
Second rank: Gon Daisojo (the provisional highest position, upper grade) (purple)
Third rank: Chu sojo (the highest position, middle grade)(purple)
Fourth rank: Gon Chu sojo (the provisional highest position, middle grade)(purple)
Fifth rank: Sho sojo (the highest position, lower grade)(purple)
Sixth rank: Gon Sho sojo (the provisional highest position, lower grade)(purple)
Seventh rank: Dai sozu (the second-highest position, upper grade) (yellow-green)
Eighth rank: Gon dai sozu (the provisional second-highest position, upper grade) (yellow-green)
Ninth rank: Chu sozu (the second-highest position, middle grade)(yellow-green)
Tenth rank: Gon Chu sozu (the provisional second-highest position, middle grade)(yellow green)
Eleventh rank: Sho sozu (the third-highest position, lower grade) (pale blue)
Twelfth rank: Gon Chu sozu (the provisional third-highest position, lower grade) (pale blue)
Thirteenth rank: Dai-Risshi (literally, "master of discipline," upper grade) (pale blue)
Fourteenth rank: Risshi (literally, "master of discipline") (pale blue)
Fifteenth rank: Gon-Risshi (literally, "supernumerary master of discipline") (pale blue)


Evangelist of the head temple
Assistant evangelist

To be formally entered as a Buddhist monk

After tokudo (entrance into the Buddhist priesthood) (or docho, an official certificate for it) and finishing shidokegyo (literally, the four trainings indispensable to be a priest), they initiate the participants with denpo-kanjo (the consecration for the Transmission of the Dharma).
Those further appointed as evangelists

Regular annual events

January 5: The New Year's ceremony and the first goma kuyo (holy fire memorial service) of the year
January 6: Hatsu Shobo-e
From February 15 - 21: Ceremonies for Godairikison Ninno-e festival
February 23: Godairikison Ninno-e festival
The first Sunday in March: Okunoin-hatsu-kaihogyo
From March 18 - 24: Spring Higan ceremony(week of the spring equinox)
March 24 - May 6: Spring exhibition at Reihokan (the museum), including a special exhibition of the interior of Kon-do Hall (main hall of a Buddhist temple), which is a national treasure
April 1 - 21: Seiryu-daigongen reisaioe, Daihannya tendoku hoyo (a memorial service of reading the part of "Dai Hannya kyo" to believers (in Sanskrit, Mahaprajnaparamita-sutra))
Second Sunday in May: Ho-Taiko Hanami Gyoretsu(Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI's cherry-blossom viewing parade)
May 18: The ceremony of exhibiting the Juntei Kannon, the principal image in the temple and the stamp office for temple number 11 of the Saigoku Sanjusankasho (the 33 temples that are visited during the Kansai Kannon Pilgrimage)
May 21: Sanbo-in school tokudo (entrance into the Buddhist priesthood) ceremony
June 7 to 9: Sanbo-in Monzeki Omine-san Hanakunyubu Shugyo (a sort of Shugendo training: an event of offering lotus flowers at the sacred place in the mountains)
June 15: Kobo-Daishi Gotan-e (a memorial service on the anniversary of the birth of the founder, Kobo Daishi)
July 7: Katsuragi-san Hanakunyubu Shugyo (a sort of Shugendo training; an event of offering lotus flowers at the sacred place on Mt. Katsuragi)
July 13 - 15: Urabone ceremony
Toward the end of July (for four days): A gathering of boys and girls
July 19 - 23: Sanbo-in Monzeki Okugake Shugyo (a sort of Shugendo practice performed in the mountains)
August 5: Mt. Daigo Manto Kuyo-e (praying for the ancestors)
August 6 (10 a.m.): Kaizanki ceremony (the anniversary of the death of the founder, Rigen Daishi)
September 20 - 26: Autumn Higan ceremony (week of the spring equinox)
First Saturday of October: Autumn exhibition at Reihokan (the museum), including a special exhibition of the interior of Kon-do Hall (main hall of a Buddhist temple), which is a national treasure
First Sunday of December: An exhibition at Reihokan (the museum), including a special exhibition of the interior of Kon-do Hall (main hall of a Buddhist temple), which is a national treasure
October 23: The Godairiki-ko Sewagata conference
The beginning of December: Shugen denpo kyoko (a sort of Shugendo training seminar)
December 21: Sanbo-in school denpo-kanjo (the consecration for the Transmission of the Dharma)

Educational institutions

Daigosan Denpo Academy (inside Daigo-ji Temple)
Shuchiin University (joint management)
Rakunan high school and junior high school (joint management)


It follows the doctrine of the Kogi Shingon (Old Shingon) school.


Daigoji bunkazai kenkyujo (Daigoji research institute for cultural properties)

Reihokan (Museum)

[Original Japanese]