These are some self-taken pictures of Nishi Honganji taken in August 2000.
The Amidado (Hall of Amida Buddha) is the Main Hall of Nishi Honganji. It was completed in 1760 and has undergone many renovations,
it is also designated as an Important Cultural Asset of Japan.
Morning services are also held at the Hall every morning,
the Hall enshrines the statue of Amida Buddha, as well as scroll pictures of the 7 Patriachs, Honen Shonin and Prince Shotoku.
(As the Goeido [Founder's Hall] is undergoing a major renovation in preparation for Shinran Shonin's 750th Memorial in
2011, the Image of Shinran Shonin is now installed in the left auxillary of the Amidado and Amidado is also known as Somido
The Gohonzon (Statue of Amida Buddha) is situated in the Centre of the Butsudan, which is located in the "Onaijin"
(Inner Sanctum) in the middle of the Amidado, which is the upper platform. The lower platform, situated behind the wooden
markers, are where the Hall Priests (Doso) take their positions during Gongyo. The area in front of the wooden markers are
where devotees assemble for services. Sanbutsuge is recited here every morning.
Situated on the left and right of the
Butsudan (hidden) are the scroll pictures of the 6 Patriachs (Ryuju, Tenshin, Donran, Doshaku, Zendo and Genshin). On the
right auxillary (hidden) are the scroll pictures of Honen Shonin and Prince Shotoku.
The Goei (Wooden Image of Shinran Shonin) is situated in the left auxillary of the Amidado while the Goeido is undergoing
a major renovation in preparation for Shinran Shonin's 750th Memorial in 2011. This image is said to have been made by Shinran
Shonin himself and after his death, some of ashes were mixed in the statue as well. The Shoshinge is recited here every morning.
Situated on the left and right of the Image are the scroll pictures of the Patriachs (Monshu).
Left: Amidadomon (Amidado Gate), one of the two gates to enter Nishi Honganji; the other being Goeidomon. Both are located
along one of Kyoto's busiest streets - Horikawadori. In front of the Amidado and Goeido is a moat that was used to protect
the Honganji during Japan's Civil Wars, and now serves as a reminder to those troubled times.
Right: Kyozo (Sutra
Repisitory), built by the 14th Monshu - Jakunyo Shonin to commemorate the 13th Monshu Ryonyo Shonin's 17th Memorial. The Scriptures
inside the Kyozo were published by a Tendai High Priest Tenkai in woodblock form and were presented to the Honganji as a present
from the Imperial Court of Japan in 1648. The woodblock scriptures took 12 years to complete.
The Kyozo is normally not
open to the public for viewing except during special annual services such as Rikkyo Kaishu-e and other services.
Left: Sanpai Kaikan (Devotees Hall) - here members and devotees (Monto) of the Honganji come to register to purchase Buddhist
artifacts (Gohonzon, Shomyoshu etc). People register at the Sanpai Kaikan to take their "Kikyoshiki" (Confirmation/Refuge
ceremony) which is held twice a day (after morning service & during 1:30pm in the afternoon). Scroll pictures of Amida
Buddha or Omyogyo (Name) for the home Butsudan are also bought here. Reservations for various services, such as weddings,
infant presentation rites and memorial rites are also made here.
Right: Shumusho (Shinshu Administrative Hall)
- offices pertaining to the various Honganji Organisations are located here, it is the main office hall for the over-running
of the various activities pertaining to Jodo Shinshu affairs, including Youth Activities, Administrative Affairs etc. Located
on the 1st floor is a book shop and a souvenier shop which sells various Butsugu (Altar peripherals).