The highlights and how to get to Taizo-in.

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Taizo-in (退蔵院) is one of the sub-temples (塔頭:tatchu) of Myoshin-ji (妙心寺) which is located in Hanazono, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto City.

Myoshin-ji is the biggest Zen temple in Japan, and it has a total of 48 sub-temples.
And Taizo-in is also one of these sub-temples.

Among those sub-temples, only Keishun-in (桂春院), Taizo-in (退蔵院), and Daishin-in (大心院) are open to the public on a regular basis.
So, when you go to Myoshin-ji, I recommend that you go to these sub-temples as well.

The highlights of this small temple are the ‘Hyonen-zu’ (The painting of catching Japanese catfish with bottle gourd)‘ and the ‘Japanese garden’.

‘Hyonen-zu’ is said to be the best masterpiece of the earlyest suiboku paintings.

In addition, the garden of this temple has been designated as a historic site (史跡), a place of scenic beauty (名勝), and Michelin Green Guide ★★.

If you want to see the best masterpiece of the early days Japanese ink painting, please visit this temple.

So, I visited Taizo-in this time.

Contents:

  1. The history of Taizo-in
  2. The history of Myoshin-ji (the main temple of Taizo-in)
  3. About Taizo-in
  4. Information for visitors
  5. The highlights of Taizo-in
  6. The videos/photos of Taizo-in
  7. The goshuin (red seal) of Taizo-in
  8. How to get to Taizo-in
  9. Hotel search & reservation around Taizo-in

1.The history of Taizo-in

Let’s study the history of this sub-temple with me before introducing of Taizo-in (退蔵院).
I think that we can enjoy the sightseeing of this sub-temple more by learning the history of it. XD

Taizo-in was founded in 1404 by Shigemichi HATANO (波多野重通) who was a busho (a Japanese military commander) of the Echigo Province (越後国) in the Muromachi period (室町時代).
When the foundation of this temple, he invited Muin Soin (無因宗因) who was the chief priest of Myoshin-ji as founding priest.

‘Taizo (退蔵)’ has the meaning of ‘the efforts behind the scenes.’

The Rinzai sect (臨済宗) that this temple belongs to is the biggest sect in Japanese Zen Buddhism.
And the Rinzai sect regards ‘Zen mondo (riddles)‘ in particular as important in the buddhist training.

There is the Japanese suiboku (ink) painting called ‘Hyonen-zu (瓢鮎図)‘ in this temple.
taizoin-13

‘Hyo (瓢)’ has the meaning of ‘gourd’, and ‘鮎 (Nen)’ has the meaning of ‘Japanese catfish.’
So, it expresses ‘the painting of catching Japanese catfish with bottle gourd.’

‘How do you catch this Japanese catfish if you are in that position?’

This picture has such the riddle.

It is said that Musashi MIYAMOTO (宮本武蔵) who was the greatest swordsman in Japan also practiced Zen Buddhism and swordsmanship in this temple.

Now, ‘Hyonen-zu’ is said to be the best masterpiece of the early days Japanese ink painting and has been designated as a national treasure.

In these reason, this temple is one of the most important sub-temples in Myoshin-ji and Rinzai-sect now.

2.The history of Myoshin-ji (the main temple of Taizo-in)

If you want to know the history of Myoshin-ji, please read following article.

3.About Taizo-in

Taizō-in (退蔵院) is the oldest sub-temple (tatchū (塔頭)) of the Myōshin-ji Rinzai Zen Buddhist temple, situated in the northwest of Kyoto, Japan. It was founded by Zen priest Muinsoin in 1404. The original temple buildings were burned during the Ōnin War (1467-1477), and were later rebuilt.
引用(citation):https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taiz%C5%8D-in

Open:9:00 ~ 17:00
Admission fee:500 yen (High school student or older), 300 yen (Elementary / Junior high school student)
Address:35, Hanazono Myoshinjicho, Ukyo-ku Kyoto-shi, Kyoto, 616-8035, Japan
Phone number:+81-75-463-2855
Foundation:1404
Founder:Shigemichi HATANO (波多野重通)
Sect:Rinzai sect Myoshin-ji School (臨済宗妙心寺派)
Principal image:Muin Soin (無因宗因)

Taizo-in (退蔵院) is one of the sub-temples (塔頭:tatchu) of Myoshin-ji (妙心寺) which is located in Hanazono, Ukyo Ward, Kyoto City.
taizoin-01

The garden of this temple has been designated as a historic site (史跡), a place of scenic beauty (名勝), and Michelin Green Guide ★★.
taizoin-04

In possession of ‘Hyonen-zu (瓢鮎図:Catching a Catfish with a Gourd)’ drawn by Josetsu (如拙), one of the most important Japan earliest suiboku paintings and a National Treasure.
This exhibiting painting is a replica now, and a genuine article is deposited with the Kyoto National Museum (京都国立博物館).
taizoin-13

An admission fee is 500 yen (adult).
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Next, let’s go to see the highlights of Taizo-in!!
taizoin-06

4.Information for visitors

・Photography and video recording are prohibited inside the building of this temple. (excluding ‘Hyonen-zu’)

・Monopod/Tripods and stepladders are prohibited in this temple.

・The worship method of a Shinto shrine and a Buddhist temple, please refer to the following article.

5.The highlights of Taizo-in

This mark ‘*‘ is a pay area.

山門:San-mon gate

This is the San-mon (gate) which has the role as a entrance of this temple.
It has been designated as a tangible cultural properties designated by Kyoto Prefecture.
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庫裏:Kuri

This is the Kuri.
It has the role as a priest’s living quarters or the kitchen of a temple.
taizoin-09

大玄関 (重要文化財)*:O-genkan (Important Cultural Property)*

This is the O-genkan which has the role as a entrance of the Hojo.
It has been designated as an important cultural property.
Because it has a shape of the hakama (袴) (man’s formal divided skirt), this gate is also called ‘Hakama shaped gate’.
taizoin-10

方丈 (重要文化財)*:Hojo (Important Cultural Property)*

This is the Hojo which was reconstructed in 1597 of the Azuchi–Momoyama period (安土桃山時代).
It has been designated as an important cultural property.
taizoin-11

It is said that Musashi MIYAMOTO (宮本武蔵) practiced Zen Buddhism and swordsmanship at this building in the Edo period (江戸時代).
taizoin-12

瓢鮎図 (国宝)*:Hyonen-zu (National Treasure)*

There is the Japanese suiboku (ink) painting called ‘Hyonen-zu (瓢鮎図)’ in this building
taizoin-14

This exhibiting painting is a replica now, and a genuine article is deposited with the Kyoto National Museum (京都国立博物館).
taizoin-13

元信の庭 (史跡・名勝)*:Motonobu’s garden (Historic Sites・Special Places of Scenic Beauty)*

This is the Karesansui garden (Japanese rock garden) named ‘Motonobu’s garden‘.
taizoin-15

This garden is designed by Motonobu KANO (狩野元信) who was a painter of the Kano School (狩野派) in the Muromachi period, and have been designated as a historic site (史跡), a place of scenic beauty (名勝).
taizoin-16

余香苑*:Yoko-en garden*

This is the ‘Yoko-en garden‘ which is the representative Japanese garden in the Showa period.
This garden was designed by Kinsaku NAKANE (中根金作) who was also called Enshu KOBORI (小堀遠州) of the Showa period.
taizoin-18

This is the Chisen Kaiyu style garden (a style of Japanese garden with a path around a central pond and spring).
taizoin-17

陽の庭*:Yo-no-niwa garden*

The left side of the Yoko-en is called ‘Yo-no-niwa garden (the garden of positive)‘, and is covered in white sand.
‘Yo-no-niwa garden’ and ”In-no-niwa garden’ expresses a human two-facedness.
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陰の庭*:In-no-niwa garden*

The right side garden is called ‘In-no-niwa garden (the garden of negative)‘, and is covered in black sand.
‘Yo-no-niwa garden’ and ”In-no-niwa garden’ expresses a human two-facedness.
taizoin-20

水琴窟*:Suikinkutsu (water harp cave)*

This is the Suikinkutsu (water harp cave).
Because a sound of running water echoes in a well, it is totally like the tone of the harp.
taizoin-21

大休庵(茶室)*:Daikyu-an (Tea house)*

This is the Daikyu-an which has the role as a tea house.
We can drink a green tea (include a teacake) in this building. (500 yen)
taizoin-22

6.The videos/photos of Taizo-in

■YouTube:退蔵院の境内と庭園:Taizo-in (sub-temple of Myoshin-ji) 

■Flickr:退蔵院:Taizo-in(20170220)

退蔵院:Taizo-in(20170220)

7.The goshuin (red seal) of Taizo-in

The goshuin of this temple is “Yoko-en garden (余香苑)” which is the name of this temple’s garden.
We can get this goshuin in the reception desk of the entrance. (300 yen)
taizoin-07

8.How to get to Taizo-in

How to get to Taizo-in is as follows.
Taizo-in is located in the precincts of Myoshin-ji.

The nearest station of Taizo-in is “JR Hanazono Station” or “Randen Kitano Line Myoshin-ji Station”.
(We can also go by bus from ‘JR Kyoto Station’, ‘Hankyu Kawaramachi Station’, and ‘Keihan Gion-Shijo Station’.)

  Timetable and Route Search

■Route Example (From Osaka Station to JR Hanazono Station)
myoshinji-01-en

■Route Example (From Namba Station to JR Hanazono Station)
myoshinji-02-en

■Route Example (From Kyoto Station to JR Hanazono Station)
myoshinji-03-en

■When you go on foot from JR Hanazono Station

It’s about 6 minutes (400m) on foot.

■When you go on foot from Randen Kitano Line Myoshin-ji Station

It’s about 5 minutes (300m) on foot.

■When you get on a bus from JR Kyoto Station

  Timetable and Route Search of bus

・Kyoto Sta.[D3]

・Routes/Destination:26/Bound for Omuro Ninnaji Temple


Bus company:Kyoto City Bus
Routes/Destination:26/Bound for Omuro Ninnaji Temple
Boarding bus stop:Kyoto Sta.[D3]
Alighting bus stop:Myoshinji Kitamon-mae (Myoshinji Temple)
Bus fare:230 yen
Time required:About 42 min

■When you get on a bus from Hankyu Kawaramachi Station

  Timetable and Route Search of bus

・Kyoto City Bus Shijo Kawaramachi [A]

・Routes/Destination:10/Bound for Kitano-tenmangu Shrine


Bus company:Kyoto City Bus
Routes/Destination:10/Bound for Kitano-tenmangu Shrine
Boarding bus stop:Shijo Kawaramachi [A]
Alighting bus stop:Myoshinji Kitamon-mae (Myoshinji Temple)
Bus fare:230 yen
Time required:About 43 min

・Kyoto Bus Shijo Kawaramachi

・Routes/Destination:63/Bound for Arashiyama


Bus company:Kyoto Bus
Routes/Destination:63/Bound for Arashiyama
Boarding bus stop:Shijo Kawaramachi
Alighting bus stop:Myoshinji-mae (Myoshinji Temple)
Bus fare:230 yen
Time required:About 34 min

・Routes/Destination:65/Bound for Arisugawa


Bus company:Kyoto Bus
Routes/Destination:65/Bound for Arisugawa
Boarding bus stop:Shijo Kawaramachi
Alighting bus stop:Myoshinji-mae (Myoshinji Temple)
Bus fare:230 yen
Time required:About 34 min

■When you get on a bus from Keihan Gion-Shijo Station

  Timetable and Route Search of bus

・Shijo Keihan-mae [C]

・Routes/Destination:10/Bound for Kitano-tenmangu Shrine


Bus company:Kyoto City Bus
Routes/Destination:10/Bound for Kitano-tenmangu Shrine
Boarding bus stop:Shijo Keihan-mae [C]
Alighting bus stop:Myoshinji Kitamon-mae (Myoshinji Temple)
Bus fare:230 yen
Time required:About 40 min

■When you take a taxi

From Kyoto Station:2,610 yen ~ 3,210 yen (about 20 minutes)
From Gion-Shijo Station:2,450 yen ~ 2,910 yen (about 15 minutes)

・Let’s show a taxi driver the following phrase.

myoshinji-35

・If you want to call a taxi, let’s show the following phrase.
taxi-call

[Phone number of taxi dispatch : Around the Kyoto Station]*Japanese text only.

9.Hotel search & reservation around Taizo-in

How did you like it?

Please try to go to this temple.

Have a nice trip! XD

<Let’s search the sightseeing information of Kansai in Japan on ‘Japan’s Travel Manual‘!!>
<This site introduces the easiest way to get Japanese (Kansai) sightseeing spots to you.>

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