Komyozenji Temple Daizaifu

Dazaifu Temples: Komyozenji Temple 光明禅寺

Komyozenji: Rinzai Zen in Japan

Komyozenji Temple in Dazaifu, Fukuoka Prefecture, is a Rinzai Zen temple with connections to Tofukuji Temple in western Kyoto.

Komyozenji is most famous for its exquisite Zen stone gardens: a front garden and a rear garden, which some people consider the finest gardens in Japan.

History of Komyozen-ji Temple

Komyozenji was founded in 1273 during the Kamakura Period of Japanese history by Tetsugyu Enshin (1254-1326), a nobleman of the Sugiwara family who in later life became a follower of the Zen priest Enni (1202-1280), who had studied Zen in China and on his return founded the important Zen temple of Tofukuji in Kyoto.

Komyozenji Temple, Dazaifu, Fukuoka Prefecture, Kyushu.
Komyozenji Temple's spectacular rear garden incorporates stones, gravel, moss and plants
Komyozenji Temple garden, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan.
Komyozenji Temple's front garden is a dry stone Zen garden, the rocks of which spell out the character for light

Komyozenji consists of several tatami-floored, simple wooden buildings decorated with Buddhist statues and paintings. The stone garden in the front of the temple consists of raked gravel and fifteen stones arranged to form the kanji character for light, a reference to the Buddha's halo.

Komyozenji's rear garden incorporates plants and moss along with stones and gravel is famous for its spectacular autumn maple leaves. The gravel and moss in the larger rear garden represent water and land features.

Komyozenji Temple Access

Dazaifu-shi, Zaifu 2-16-1
Tel: 092 922 4053
Komyozenji Temple Map

Komyozenji is a few minutes walk from both Dazaifu Station and Dazaifu Tenmangu Shrine.

The temple grounds are open from 8am-5pm and there is an entrance fee of 200 yen.

Komyozen-ji Temple wall, Dazaifu, Fukuoka
The outer walls of Komyozen-ji Temple, Dazaifu, Fukuoka, Kyushu.
Komyozenji Temple pond, Fukuoka Prefecture
Temple building and pond at Komyozenji Temple, Dazaifu, Fukuoka.

Images Jake Davies

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