Myoken-ji Temple (妙顕寺)

Myoken-ji Temple is a Daihonzan (head temple) of the Nichiren Sect located in Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture. Its sango (literally, "mountain name"), which is the title prefixed to the name of a Buddhist temple, Gusokusan. The temple has 9 sub-temples (Kuhon-in, Jujo-in, Senmyo-in, Hoon-in, Onmei-in, Zengyo-in, Honmyo-in, Jissei-in, Kyoho-in).

In 1321, Nichizo (1269-1342) was granted a temple estate by the Emperor Godaigo on which he founded the Myoken-ji Temple as the first Nichiren Sect site in Kyoto at Imakoji Lane near Mikawa (Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto City). The temple received an imperial sanction from the Emperor Godaigo in 1334 and became a chokugan-ji (temple built by the will of the emperor). It was relocated to Shijo-dori Street and Tansu-dori Street (in present-day Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto City) in 1341 during the time of 2nd chief priest Myojitsu. The temple was moved again in 1393 to Sanjobomon Horikawa (in present-day Horikawa-dori Oike-dori Streets, Nakagyo Ward) and renamed to Myohon-ji Temple but the original name was restored in 1519.

Myoken-ji Temple prospered of the main temple of the twenty one head temples of the Nichiren Sect in central Kyoto but was destroyed by fire in the Tenbun Hokke Disturbance of 1536 and the followers fled to the city of Sakai. The followers were allowed to return to Kyoto in 1542 and they rebuilt the temple at Nijo-dori Street and Nishinotoin-dori Street. In 1583, the temple was relocated to its current site by the order of Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI.

The temple was destroyed in the Great Fire of the Tenmei era in 1788 but reconstructed soon after.

Myoken-ji Temple is also referred to as 'Shikai Shodo' and 'Shijo Monryu.'
The temple is currently served by 65th chief priest Nanjo Nichiji.

Cultural properties

Important Cultural Properties (Nationally Designated)

Myoken-ji Temple documents in 60 scrolls, 74 panels and 1,294 pages; designation includes a maki-e document box
Kinji-Hokkekyo (gold Lotus Sutra): 5th scroll
Letter written by the Emperor Gokomatsu: 2 panels
Shinkokuosho written by Nichiren
Letter of reply to Gonin written by Nichiren

Other cultural properties

Lotus Sutra written in gold on blue paper (tangible cultural property designated by Kyoto Prefecture)
Lotus Sutra written in gold on white paper (tangible cultural property designated by Kyoto Prepecture)
Temple bell (tangible cultural property designated by Kyoto Prefecture)
Six-panel folding screen ink gold leaf covered paper Rokaku Sansui-zu (painting of a palace and landscape) (tangible cultural property designated by Kyoto Prefecture) by Sanraku KANO.

514 Myokenjimae-cho, Teranouchi dori Shinmachi dori-Nishiiru, Kamigyo Ward, Kyoto City, Kyoto Prefecture

10 minutes walk from Imadegawa station on the Kyoto City Subway.

[Original Japanese]