Above: Teppoyama Kofun and path

Temples in Gyoda:



-1 Seizenji-temple:

 This temple was created in 1440 as branch temple of Rhoenji-temple(Kumagaya) by Narita Akitada who was younger brother of 14th Lord of Oshi Castle, Narita Akiyasu (supposed to be founder of Oshi Castle). The name of this temple comes from Akitada ’s Buddhist name. Monk Sosa was invited to open the temple from Rhoenji in 1533. 


 6th monk, Myoryo Risatsu gave readers of “Nobou no Shiro” impression that he was heroic in it. Principal image of this temple is the sitting stature of Buddha. We can see the tomb of Narita Akitada at the graveyard.






 -2 Kougenji-temple:

  Masaki-Tanbanokami-Katsuhide who was a subordinate of the Narita clan, fought against Ishida Mitsunari. After the battle Masaki established this temple to repose the soul of dead people.  People who were killed by the battle, were buried in here.




 -3 Henjyoin-temple:

  The principal image of this temple is the sitting statue of Buddha. It is told that this was built in 1020 and was granted as authorized temple. Once there were seven buildings including Yakushi-do in the ground of the temple. However, most buildings were burned down at the attack of Oshi castle by Ishida Mitsunari in 1590. The principal image is graceful and beautiful Fujiwara statue in middle Heian period.






Left:  Big old tree at Henjyoin-temple



Left:   Portrait of Okudaira Sadayoshi, grand father of Matsudaira Tadaakira



  -4 Daizoji-temple:

  Matsudaira Tadaakira built this temple to pray Sadayoshi who contributed to prosperity of his family in Koriyama, Nara. Daizoji-temple had kept this portrait. When the temple was transferred to Oshi with the Okudaira Matsudaira clan, also this portrait was moved to Oshi.




-5 Rengeji-temple:

 It is said that this was founded by Nichirenshu-nichiro-shonin in 1247.

Hojyo Yasutoki permitted Nichiren-shonin who was exiled to Sado-island when They had national difficulty against attack by Mongolian. Nichiro, a subordinate of Nichiren-shonin requested to stay a night at this temple on the way to Sado-island..

  It is told that 17th Lord of Oshi castle, Narita Ujinaga made this temple as the Oshi castle shrine.



-6 Shokakuji-temple:

 This temple was created in 1578 by Narita Ujinaga,17th Lord of Oshi Castle and Monk Chikyo-Osho was invited to this temple. After Narita clan had gone from the castle. Matudaira Tadayasu (later called Tadayoshi), 4th son of Tokugawa Ieyasu, ruled the castle in 1592 and he decided to enshrine his mother at this temple. Hearing his decision, Ieyasu let Oguri Tadashichiro (forefather of Oguri Tadamasa) remodel this temple.


 Left:  Tomb of grandson of both Tokugawa Ieyasu and Ii Naomasa

 Unfortunately Tadayoshi and his wife(Masako) who was a daughter of Ii Naomasa ,one of the best four of the Tokugawa ,had lost their first son in 1598, and he(Buddhist name: Baitei-doji) was buried at this temple. This temple has a symbol of Tokugawa clan, Mitsuba-Aoi on the roof. Tadayoshi showed remarkable performance at Battle of Sekigahara in 1600 and he was promoted to the Lord of Kiyosu Castle.




Left: Cylindrical gild-copper container with fretwork of family


          Length:43cm(17inches), Diameter:8.5cm(3.3inches)


 Tadayoshi had make this amulet to hope growth of his first son.

Unfortunately, the son died very soon after his birth. This is a 

heritage of Shokakuji-temple.




-7 Amidaji-temple:


 It is told that the beginning of this temple was in 1294. This is only a temple that belongs to Jishu sect in Gyoda. The principal image of this temple is the standing stature of Amida Buddha. Along with other two small statures of Buddha, they organize Amida Buddha Three Statures.




-8 Jyokein-temple:


  Tsuru-hime, daughter of the 14th Lord of Oshi castle, Narita Akiyasu was a founder of this temple. The name of the temple was from her Buddha name, Jyokein who died in 1516.




 -9 Torinji-temple:

 Okudaira Matsudaira Tadaakira, the founder of the Okudaira Matsudaira  built the temple in Yamato Koriyama in Kanei period(1624-1645). Torii Suneemon was well known samurai with a story that he was killed by Takeda Katsuyori at Nagasino-battle in 1575. His offspring were buried at this temple. This temple was transferred to Oshi with the Okudaira Matudaira clan in 1823.

-10 Sakitamazan Jyotokuji-temple:

 This temple is known as the oldest temple in Saitama Prefecture (established in 806-810). There are Kosakinuma-marsh and Sakitama Kofun-gun near this temple. It locates on the extended line that connects Oshi Castle and Maruhakayama Kofun. It is supposed there was a central area of village around the temple and it would be a landmark building since an ancient period.



More than 20 foundation stones were found at this temple. The biggest one is about 67 cm (26.4 inches) in diameter and 48 cm (18.9 inches) in height. It is estimated that column with 55cm (21.6 inches) in diameter had been on it. This is an equal to columns used at Golden Pagoda of Toshodaiji-temple in Nara Prefecture.

This temple had an outer moat around it, and old temple documents tell us that templewas set on fire by Uesugi Kenshin and Ishida Mitsunari.



World history 1:

In 800, Charlemagne, king of the Franks was crowned Holy Roman Emperor by Pope Leo as Charles, in Rome. However Eastern Roman Empire in Constantinople didn’t approve it. Being treated as beginning King of Christian European Kings, Charles(Charles the Great) is called the Father of Europe.



 -11 Tenshoji-temple:


 The beginner of the Matsudaira, Tadaakira built five temples (Tenshoji, Torinji, Daizoji, Ryuganji, Tenganji) in Koriyama. This is the most important temple in five temples. The 11th Lord of Oshi-Han, Matsudaira Tadakuni and 9th, 12th Lord were also buried here.





-12 Tenshuji-temple:



 This temple has Shotoku-taishi’s standing stature that was created by sculptor Keizen in 1247. The stature with obvious creating date is the oldest one in Japan. The objective of this stature seems to respect Shotoku-taishi and take care of him






-13 Kanpukuji-temple:

 There are two Stone Plates (Itabi) at this temple. These were built in 1261 and 1265. These are for Kawahara brothers who fought for the Genji against the Heike at Ichinotani. They fought at the first line of the battlefield and died. The Stone Plate might have two objectives.

 -1 This is to pray for repose of a dead person’s soul.

 -2 Samurai who built this, did want to go to heaven, not hell.


These are national designated properties of the temple.




-14 Jyojyuin-temple:


 This temple locates at near the Ancient Lotus Park. There is three-story Pagoda that was built in 1729 in hope to prevent disease and epidemic. The Pagoda is 12 yards height, and 2.6 yards width.





-15 Manganji-temple:


 This temple locates at the south east from central area of Gyoda. Cherry tree that has been surviving more than six hundred years at back yard of this temple. We can enjoy beautiful cherry blossoms in spring.




Coffee Break 3:

There are so many temples in Gyoda not only in number but also with unique names. The name of Manganji means in literally that the temple would satisfy wishes of people who visit there. The names of Jyojyuin means in literally that people would attain their objectives if they visit the temple.

 So some persons visit Manganji first, then Jyojyuin next, to make sure that their wishes and objectives would come true.




World history 2:

England established East India Company in 1600, the Netherlands also established East India Company in 1602. Later both companies had gone into collision about trade in Southeastern Asia.

 Qing Dynasty (Great Qing) was founded in Manchuria in 1616, and had ruled China and Mongol from 1644 to 1912.



-16 Chokoji-temple

  This temple was built in 1593 and belongs to Soutou-shu sect. Kawashima Kihoku, one of three famous poets of Haiku (Japanese short poem of 17 syllable) field in Meiji period, was buried at this temple. So, Haiku meeting is held here every year.


Coffee Break 4:                    Zen sect Words

Offerings:                   When giving, expect nothing in return.

Words of Love            Speak with kindness and grace.

Considerate Acts:          Forget the self and be of service to others.


Live together:               Help each other to live.

Correct vision:              See things as they truly are.

Proper action:               Do not cause trouble: Do the right thing.


Right livelihood:           Live life properly, without greed.

Adhere strictly:             Do not live a self-absorbed life. Abide by the tenets,

     be compassionate toward others.

Perseverance:               Do not give in when faced with pain or sorrow:

Endure and conquer.          


Effort:                    Improve constantly with great effort.

Practice meditation:    Calm your heart/mind, without disruption.

Wisdom:                          Identify the truth. Develop your awareness for the truth.






Left:    Seiganji-temple

Right:  Jyojyoji-temple


-17 Seiganji-temple

  This temple was built in 1557. When the new Lord Matsudaira Tadataka was transferred from Kuwana to Osh in 1823, a picture map was written. It was strange that there was another temple just next to this temple and land of this temple was more spacious than land of neighbor temple, Jyojyoji on this map. However, present situation is reverse. The chief priest mentioned that this temple is the smallest one in Gyoda district and this change occurred due to the Farmland Reform after World War


 -18 Jyojyoji-temple: 

 This temple was built in 1823, as training branch temple of Tsukiji Honganji-temple in Edo. Kato Daisui, executive of the Oshi castle was sponsor of this temple. For he was missing the temple that belonged to the same sect the Kato worshiped.


Left:     Statue of Buddha

             Total height:  7.4 m 

              Weight:          6.7 tons


-19 Daichoji-temple:


 After Abe Tadaaki entered to the Oshi Castle in 1639, Daichoji-temple had been the family temple of the Abe for 184 years. It is said that the fist sitting statue of Buddha at the temple was made in the middle of the 18th century(17161736). It faced to the Oshi Castle. However, the statue,bell and others were delivered and disappeared in the WW. Current statue was made in 1995.



-20 Chokyuji-temple:

 Narita Akiyasu built this temple in the second half of the 15th century. (14691487) This temple locates at ominous direction, east of Oshi Castle. So, he erected it to wish good luck of his clan at battle field forever. However, Ishida Mitsunari put fire on this temple when he attacked Oshi Castle in 1590. The entrance gate seemed to be built in the 17th century, early Edo period. This gate reminds us features of previous century, Momoyama period.

     Wise man, priest 1                Wise man, priest 2                  Wise man, priest 3            These belongs to Chokyuji-temple.