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Asano Nagaharu, Princess Aguri… The important people who started Miyoshi carved their history into this temple

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Asano Nagaharu, Princess Aguri… The important people who started Miyoshi carved their history into this temple

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Hogen Temple (Rinzai Zen Buddhism)

Adress: 1057 Miyoshimachi, Miyoshi, Hiroshima 728-0021 Call: 0824-62-3680

Mt. Higuma rises high over Miyoshicho as if watching over the town. At the foot of the mountain, Asano Nagaharu, the first feudal lord of the Miyoshi-Asano domain built Hogen temple as the family temple of the Asano family in 1633.

In spring, sakura trees bloom gloriously, a bush warbler tweets in a cool wind and time passes slowly. A good time to take a deep breath at Hogen Temple.

The chief priest, Wada Bokusho, relates the history of the Asano family in simple language. He has a calm and curious manner hoping listener’s will find the history and his retelling interesting.

The beginning of the Miyoshi-Asano domain is that; Nagaharu was born to a concubine in Kyoto as the first child of the Asano family of Hiroshima. The lord of the Asano family wanted to give him a place where he belongs, so the lord split his land and started a new domain for him.
Since Nagaharu was born near Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine in Kyoto, the Inari shrine built in his home was moved along with him to Hogen Temple.

Hogen Temple also has the Ihatsuto (a funeral monument containing the hair of the departed) of Princess Aguri (later called Youzei-In), the lawful wife of Asano Takuminokami. There is also a “Gishido” (Retainer's House) where 47 wooden statues representing retainers of the Akou clan are enshrined for breaking into the Edo residence of the feudal lord Kira Kozunosuke to take revenge for the death of their lord, Asano Naganori. Since Hogen temple has multiple historic properties, the temple itself has also been preserved by local residents. At Gishi (loyal retainers) Festival and Sakura Festival, people pray at the temple as a related place.

Since it's the family temple of the Asano, they also preserve many historic properties such as the plaque that was written by Asano Nagaharu, items for offering that has the crest of the family, and a picture of a cloth of Chinese weave sent for a memorial service. The Asano family crest expressed "crossed hawk wings". The chief priest says, "A family crest should have been different with each lord. I assume you can tell which generation had which family crest." Looking at the crests in various places around the temple inspires a feeling of greatness about the lords and their domain.

The temple grounds are a well known place for the beautiful weeping cherry tree, and it is said the trees in Ako city in Hyogo and the Chamber of Commerce of Miyoshi both originate from this single tree.

Also ”Gukyoku Spring Garden" constructed by the 4th priest shows a wildly different scene depending on the season.
At the end of May water lily blooms on the pond, in autumn colored leaves float on the surface, and in winter everything is covered with fluffy snow. Each scene offer a superb view that makes you want to snap a pic and make a postcard out of it.

These views can also be seen from the Japanese-style room in the temple which is used for students' tea ceremonies and local events.

Feel free to visit the garden where you can hear small birds' tweets.
*If you wish to visit please let the temple know beforehand.

Information

スポット名 Hogen Temple (Rinzai Zen Buddhism)
所在地 1057 Miyoshimachi, Miyoshi, Hiroshima 728-0021
電話番号 0824-62-3680