16 Koshoji 興聖寺(こうしょうじ)

Denomination:  Rinzai (臨剤宗)

Main Image:  Enmei Jizo Bosatsu (延命地蔵菩薩)

Location:  Tsukamoto, Kannami (函南町塚本)

Koshoji was erected in the Muromachi Period, in 1487. Due to a lack of records, its history remains largely unknown.

Enmei Jizo - Longevity Jizo

Enmei Jizo – Longevity Jizo

The head priest at the temple was kind enough to tell me about this sliding door that use to be part of an outer building in the temple grounds, but now stands as a panel on the wall. Apparently after being chased by hunters, the deer sought refuge in the only place left for them to hide, the temple. With their backs literally to the wall, the hunters took  aim and fired. The deer leapt into the sliding door for safety and remain there today. If examined closely, also remaining are the bullet holes left from the rifles of the hunters.

Deer on a wooden door panel (left); Bullet holes (right)

Another important artefact housed in the temple is the Maria Kannon statue. During the time of the Tokugawa Shogunate, Christianity was banned from being practiced so Christians hid their statue of the virgin Mary in Koshoji. Today it stands as an important cultural artefact of the village.IMG_02345

15 Kogan-in  高岩院  Previous                                  Next  17 Senpukuji  泉福寺

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