Articles by alphabetic order
 Ā Ī Ñ Ś Ū Ö Ō
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0

Shikoku Pilgrimage

From Tibetan Buddhist Encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Zentsu-ji in Zentsu-ji City Kagawa pref46n4350.jpg

The Shikoku Pilgrimage (四国遍路 Shikoku Henro?) or Shikoku Junrei (四国巡礼?) is a multi-site pilgrimage of 88 temples associated with the Buddhist monk Kūkai (Kōbō Daishi) on the island of Shikoku, Japan.

A popular and distinctive feature of the island's cultural landscape, and with a long history, large numbers of pilgrims (known as henro (遍路?)) still undertake the journey for a variety of ascetic, pious, and tourism-related purposes.

In addition to the 88 "official" temples of the pilgrimage, there are over 200 bangaitemples not considered part of the official 88.

To complete the pilgrimage, it is not necessary to visit the temples in order; in some cases it is even considered lucky[citation needed] to travel in reverse order.

The pilgrimage is traditionally completed on foot, but modern pilgrims use cars, taxis, buses, bicycles, or motorcycles.

The walking course is approximately 1,200 km long and can take anywhere from 30 to 60 days to complete.

"Henro" (遍路?) is the Japanese word for pilgrim, and the inhabitants of Shikoku call the pilgrims o-henro-san (お遍路さん?), the o (?) being an honorific and the san (さん?) a title similar to "Mr." or "Mrs.".

They are often recognizable by their white clothing, sedge hats, and kongō-tsue or walking sticks.

Alms or osettai are frequently given.

Many pilgrims begin and complete the journey by visiting Mount Kōya in Wakayama Prefecture, which was settled by Kūkai and remains the headquarters of the Shingon sect of Buddhism.

The 21 km walking trail up to Koya-san still exists, but most pilgrims use the train.

Attesting to the popularity of the Shikoku pilgrimage, from the eighteenth century a number of smaller imitative versions have been established. These include a 150km circuit on the island of Shōdoshima, northeast of Takamatsu; a 3km course on the grounds of Ninna-ji in Kyoto; a route on the Chita Peninsula near Nagoya; and circuits in Edo and Chiba Prefecture.



Pilgrimages have played an important part in Japanese religious practice since at least the Heian period.

Typically centred upon holy mountains, particular divinities, or charismatic individuals, they are usually to Buddhist sites although those to the shrines of Kumano and Ise are notable exceptions.

Kōbō Daishi

Kūkai, born at Zentsū-ji (Temple 75) in 774, studied in China, and upon his return was influential in the promotion of esoteric Buddhism.

He established the Shingon retreat of Kōya-san, was an active writer, undertook a programme of public works, and during visits to the island of his birth is popularly said to have established or visited many of its temples and to have carved many of their images. He is posthumously known as Kōbō Daishi.


The legends and cult of Kōbō Daishi, such as the episode of Emon Saburō, were maintained and developed by the monks of Kōya-san who travelled to expound Shingon and were active, along with other hijiri, in Shikoku.

In the Edo period, the policy of tochi kinbaku (土地緊縛?) restricted and regulated the movement of ordinary people.

Pilgrims were required to obtain travel permits, follow the main paths, and pass through localities within a certain time limit, with the book of temple stamps or nōkyō-chō helping to provide proof of passage.



Shikoku literally means four provinces, those of Awa, Tosa, Iyo, and Sanuki, reorganised during the Meiji period into the Prefectures of Tokushima, Kōchi, Ehime, and Kagawa.

The pilgrim's journey through these four provinces is likened to a symbolic path to enlightenment, with temples 1-23 representing the idea of awakening (発心 hosshin?), 24-39 austerity and discipline (修行 shugyō?), 40-65 attaining enlightenment (菩提 bodai?), and 66-88 entering nirvana (涅槃 nehan?).


The pilgrim's traditional costume comprises a white shirt (白衣 oizuru?), conical Asian hat (すげ笠 suge-kasa?), and kongō-zue (金剛杖?).

This may be supplemented by a wagesa (輪袈裟?).

The henro also carries a bag (ずだ袋 zuda-bukuro?) containing name slips (納札 osame-fuda?), prayer beads (数珠 juzu?) (also known as nenju (念珠?)), a nōkyō-chō (納経帳?), incense sticks (線香 senkō?), and coins used as offerings (お賽銭 o-saisen?).

The more religiously-minded henro may also carry a book of sutras (経本 kyōbon?) and go-eika (ご詠歌?) set with a bell.


Upon arrival at each temple the henro washes before proceeding to the Hondō.

After offering coins, incense, and the osame-fuda, the Heart Sutra (般若心経 Hannya Shingyō?) is chanted along with repetition of the Mantra of the main image (本尊 honzon?) and the Mantra of Light (光明真言 Kōmyō Shingon?).

After kigan and ekō prayers, the henro proceeds to the Daishidō.

Coins and a fuda are similarly offered, and again the Heart Sutra is chanted, along with repetition of the Gohōgō Mantra, namu-Daishi-henjō-kongō.

The 88 Temples

Collectively, the 88 temples are known as Shikoku Hachijūhakkasho (四国八十八箇所?) or simply the Hachijūhakkasho (八十八箇所?).

No. Temple Honzon (main image) City/Town/Village Prefecture
1 Ryōzen-ji (Naruto)|Ryōzen-ji (霊山寺) Shaka Nyorai Naruto, Tokushima|Naruto Tokushima Prefecture
2 Gokuraku-ji (Naruto)|Gokuraku-ji (極楽寺) Amida Nyorai Naruto, Tokushima|Naruto Tokushima Prefecture
3 Konsen-ji (Itano)|Konsen-ji (金泉寺) Shaka Nyorai Itano, Tokushima|Itano Tokushima Prefecture
4 Dainichi-ji (Itano)|Dainichi-ji (大日寺) Dainichi Nyorai Itano, Tokushima|Itano Tokushima Prefecture
5 Jizō-ji (Itano)|Jizō-ji (地蔵寺) Enmei Jizō Bosatsu Itano, Tokushima|Itano Tokushima Prefecture
6 Anraku-ji (Kamiita)|Anraku-ji (安楽寺) Yakushi Nyorai Kamiita, Tokushima|Kamiita Tokushima Prefecture
7 Jūraku-ji (Awa)|Jūraku-ji (十楽寺) Amida Nyorai Awa, Tokushima|Awa Tokushima Prefecture
8 Kumadani-ji (Awa)|Kumadani-ji (熊谷寺) Senjū Kannon Awa Tokushima Prefecture
9 Hōrin-ji (Awa)|Hōrin-ji (法輪寺) Shaka Nyorai Awa Tokushima Prefecture
10 Kirihata-ji (Awa)|Kirihata-ji (切幡寺) Senjū Kannon Awa Tokushima Prefecture
11 Fujii-dera (Yoshinogawa)|Fujii-dera (藤井寺) Yakushi Nyorai Yoshinogawa Tokushima Prefecture
12 Shōsan-ji (Kamiyama)|Shōsan-ji (焼山寺) Kokūzō Bosatsu Kamiyama Tokushima Prefecture
13 Dainichi-ji (Tokushima)|Dainichi-ji (大日寺) Jūichimen Kannon Tokushima Tokushima Prefecture
14 Jōraku-ji (常楽寺) Miroku Bosatsu Tokushima Tokushima Prefecture
15 Awa Kokubun-ji (阿波国分寺) Yakushi Nyorai Tokushima Tokushima Prefecture
16 Kannon-ji (観音寺) Senjū Kannon Tokushima Tokushima Prefecture
17 Ido-ji (井戸寺) Yakushi Nyorai Tokushima Tokushima Prefecture
18 Onzan-ji (恩山寺) Yakushi Nyorai Komatsushima Tokushima Prefecture
19 Tatsue-ji (立江寺) Jizō Bosatsu Komatsushima Tokushima Prefecture
20 Kakurin-ji (鶴林寺) Jizō Bosatsu Katsura, Tokushima|Katsuura Tokushima Prefecture
21 Tairyūji (太竜寺) Kokūzō Bosatsu Anan, Tokushima|Anan Tokushima Prefecture
22 Byōdō-ji (平等寺) Yakushi Nyorai Anan, Tokushima|Anan Tokushima Prefecture
23 Yakuō-ji (薬王寺) Yakushi Nyorai Minami Tokushima Prefecture
24 Hotsumisaki-ji (最御崎寺) Kokūzō Bosatsu Muroto Kōchi Prefecture
25 Shinshō-ji (津照寺) Jizō Bosatsu Muroto Kōchi Prefecture
26 Kongōchō-ji (金剛頂寺) Yakushi Nyorai Muroto Kōchi Prefecture
27 Kōnomine-ji (神峰寺) Jūichimen Kannon Yasuda Kōchi Prefecture
28 Dainichi-ji (大日寺) Dainichi Nyorai Kōnan Kōchi Prefecture
29 Tosa Kokubun-ji (土佐国分寺) Senjū Kannon Nankoku Kōchi Prefecture
30 Zenrakuji (善楽寺) Amida Nyorai Kōchi Kōchi Prefecture
31 Chikurin-ji (Kōchi)|Chikurin-ji (竹林寺) Monju Bosatsu Kōchi Kōchi Prefecture
32 Zenjibu-ji (禅師峰寺) Jūichimen Kannon Nankoku Kōchi Prefecture
33 Sekkei-ji (雪蹊寺) Yakushi Nyorai Kōchi Kōchi Prefecture
34 Tanema-ji (種間寺) Yakushi Nyorai Haruno Kōchi Prefecture
35 Kiyotaki-ji (清滝寺) Yakushi Nyorai Tosa, Kochi (city)|Tosa Kōchi Prefecture
36 Shōryū-ji (青竜寺) Fudō Myōō Tosa, Kochi (city)|Tosa Kōchi Prefecture
37 Iwamoto-ji (岩本寺) Five Dhyani Buddhas|Five Buddhas Shimanto Kōchi Prefecture
38 Kongōfuku-ji (金剛福寺) Senjū Kannon Tosashimizu Kōchi Prefecture
39 Enkō-ji (延光寺) Yakushi Nyorai Sukumo Kōchi Prefecture
40 Kanjizai-ji (観自在寺) Yakushi Nyorai Ainan Ehime Prefecture
41 Ryūkōji (竜光寺) Jūichimen Kannon Uwajima Ehime Prefecture
42 Butsumoku-ji (佛木寺) Dainichi Nyorai Uwajima Ehime Prefecture
43 Meiseki-ji (明石寺) Senjū Kannon Seiyo Ehime Prefecture
44 Daihō-ji (大宝寺) Jūichimen Kannon Kumakōgen Ehime Prefecture
45 Iwaya-ji (岩屋寺) Fudō Myōō Kumakōgen Ehime Prefecture
46 Jōruri-ji (浄瑠璃寺) Yakushi Nyorai Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
47 Yasaka-ji (八坂寺) Amida Nyorai Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
48 Sairin-ji (西林寺) Jūichimen Kannon Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
49 Jōdo-ji (Matsuyama)|Jōdo-ji (浄土寺) Shaka Nyorai Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
50 Hanta-ji (繁多寺) Yakushi Nyorai Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
51 Ishite-ji (石手寺) Yakushi Nyorai Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
52 Taisan-ji (太山寺) Jūichimen Kannon Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
53 Enmyō-ji (Matsuyama)|Enmyō-ji (円明寺) Amida Nyorai Matsuyama, Ehime|Matsuyama Ehime Prefecture
54 Enmei-ji (延命寺) Fudō Myōō Imabari Ehime Prefecture
55 Nankōbō (南光坊) Daitsū-chishō Butsu Imabari Ehime Prefecture
56 Taisan-ji (泰山寺) Jizō Bosatsu Imabari Ehime Prefecture
57 Eifuku-ji (栄福寺) Amida Nyorai Imabari Ehime Prefecture
58 Senyū-ji (仙遊寺) Senjū Kannon Imabari Ehime Prefecture
59 Iyo Kokubun-ji (伊予国分寺) Yakushi Nyorai Imabari Ehime Prefecture
60 Yokomine-ji (横峰寺) Dainichi Nyorai Saijō, Ehime|Saijō Ehime Prefecture
61 Kōon-ji (香園寺) Dainichi Nyorai Saijō, Ehime|Saijō Ehime Prefecture
62 Hōju-ji (宝寿寺) Jūichimen Kannon Saijō, Ehime|Saijō Ehime Prefecture
63 Kichijō-ji (吉祥寺) Bishamonten Saijō, Ehime|Saijō Ehime Prefecture
64 Maegami-ji (前神寺) Amida Nyorai Saijō, Ehime|Saijō Ehime Prefecture
65 Sankaku-ji (三角寺) Jūichimen Kannon Shikokuchūō Ehime Prefecture
66 Unpen-ji (雲辺寺) Senjū Kannon Miyoshi Tokushima Prefecture
67 Daikō-ji (大興寺) Yakushi Nyorai Mitoyo Kagawa Prefecture
68 Jinne-in (神恵院) Amida Nyorai Kan'onji Kagawa Prefecture
69 Kannon-ji (観音寺) Shō Kannon Kan'onji Kagawa Prefecture
70 Motoyama-ji (本山寺) Batō Kannon Mitoyo Kagawa Prefecture
71 Iyadani-ji (弥谷寺) Senjū Kannon Mitoyo Kagawa Prefecture
72 Mandara-ji (曼荼羅寺) Dainichi Nyorai Zentsūji Kagawa Prefecture
73 Shusshakaji (出釈迦寺) Shaka Nyorai Zentsūji Kagawa Prefecture
74 Kōyama-ji (甲山寺) Yakushi Nyorai Zentsūji Kagawa Prefecture
75 Zentsū-ji (善通寺) Yakushi Nyorai Zentsūji Kagawa Prefecture Image:Zentsu-ji in Zentsu-ji City Kagawa pref23s5s4500.jpg|
76 Konzō-ji (金倉寺) Yakushi Nyorai Zentsūji Kagawa Prefecture
77 Dōryū-ji (道隆寺) Yakushi Nyorai Tadotsu Kagawa Prefecture
78 Gōshō-ji (郷照寺) Amida Nyorai Utazu Kagawa Prefecture
79 Tennō-ji (天皇寺) Jūichimen Kannon Sakaide Kagawa Prefecture
80 Sanuki Kokubun-ji (讃岐国分寺) Jūichimen & Senjū Kannon Takamatsu Kagawa Prefecture
81 Shiromine-ji (白峯寺) Senjū Kannon Sakaide Kagawa Prefecture
82 Negoro-ji (根香寺) Senjū Kannon Takamatsu Kagawa Prefecture
83 Ichinomiya-ji (一宮寺) Shō Kannon Takamatsu Kagawa Prefecture
84 Yashima-ji (屋島寺) Jūichimen & Senjū Kannon Takamatsu Kagawa Prefecture
85 Yakuri-ji (八栗寺) Shō Kannon Takamatsu Kagawa Prefecture
86 Shido-ji (志度寺) Jūichimen Kannon Sanuki, Kagawa|Sanuki Kagawa Prefecture
87 Nagao-ji (長尾寺) Shō Kannon Sanuki, Kagawa|Sanuki Kagawa Prefecture
88 Ōkubo-ji (大窪寺) Yakushi Nyorai Sanuki, Kagawa|Sanuki Kagawa Prefecture


Wikipedia:Shikoku Pilgrimage