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Sōjiji


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One of the two main temples of the Sōtō school of zen in Japan.second only to Eiheiji in importance. This temple was founded by Keizan Jōkin (1268–1325), who had followed Tettsū Gikai (1219–1309) to the Daijō-ji after Tettsū lost a succession dispute at the Eiheiji. Keizan took over a former Vinaya temple at Sagami (Kanazawa prefecture) and converted it to a Zen temple, giving it the name Sōjiji. Much of the temple's subsequent influence can be attributed to the next abbot, Gasan Jōseki (1275–1365), whose brilliance and energy attracted a corps of distinguished disciples, many of whom spread out to the countryside throughout Japan, establishing branches and forging solid connections with local aristocrats. In this way, the breakaway line of Sōtō, while having lost the succession dispute at the headquarters temple of Eiheiji, eventually came to dominate the Sōtō line as a result of its involvement in the life and needs of Japanese society, while the Eiheiji faction remained cloistered.

Subjects: Buddhism.


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