Located halfway up Mt. Arashiyama, you will find Horinji Temple (also known as Chifukuzan), which belongs to the Shingon sect of esoteric Buddhism. The temple is dedicated to Kokuzo Bodhisattva and is said to represent wisdom, welfare, and the acquisition of excellence in the arts, as well as to provide protect against demonic forces. This temple is known locally as the Saga-no-Kokuzo (the Kokuzo of Saga). Tradition has it that the temple first got its start when the Emperor Genmei instructed the monk Gyoki for the construction of Kadonoidera Temple in the year 713 AD. In 829 AD, the monk Dosho enshrined a statue of Kokuzo Bodhisattva and changed the name of the temple to Horinji Temple. The temple's name appears in several ancient books, such as the Konjyaku Monogatarishu (Tales of Days Past), the Makura-no-soshi (the Pillow Book), and the Heike Monogatari (Tale of the Heike), and several annual religious events are held at the temple.
Horinji Temple
Horinji Temple   Horinji Temple   Horinji Temple

Visiting the Temple at the Age of 13
Visiting the Temple at the Age of 13
There is a custom in Kyoto that brings both boys and girls to Horinji Temple when they turn thirteen. During that visit they pray to Kokuzo Bodhisattva for wisdom and protection from misfortune. Dating back to ancient times, this custom is known as the Jusan Mairi, the Coming-of-age Ceremony. Tradition has it that, on the way back from the temple visit, if one turns back to face the temple before crossing the Togetsu Bridge, one will be blessed with wisdom. The temple is frequented by both local citizens and visitors from all over Japan.
●The Jusan Mairi (Coming-of-age Ceremony) time period
Spring: From March 13th through May 13th
Fall: October and November

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