"Gohyaku-rakan" means a set of five hundred sincere disciples who accompanied Buddha all the time.

According to a classic Buddhist scripture of India, Shakyamuni, the so-called Buddha, was always accompanied by the five hundred faithful disciples, and they compiled the original Buddhist scripture after the death of the saint. Gohyaku-rakan literally means the five hundred respectable people, who had reached a state of enlightenment through the ascetic practices of Buddhism. They deserve to be treated as Buddha by all the Buddhists with a variety of offerings with their hands. In the process of the diffusion of Buddhism from India, this belief in Gohyaku-rakan became popularized step by step, thus the five hundred statues were carved everywhere in China, then Japan. A considerable number of a set of five hundred statues, old and new, are are found at the many Buddhist temples across Japan. The notable examples are "Rakan-ji" temple in Nakatsu City, Oita Prefecture, "Tokuzo-ji" temple in Ashikaga City, Tochigi Prefecture, "Kita-in" temple in Kawagoe City, Saitama Prefecture and "Kencho-ji" temple in Kamakura City, Kanagawa Prefecture.


Licensed tour guide, travel consultant,

Masahisa Takaki.

全国通訳案内士 高木聖久。


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