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Eiheiji

Eiheiji


 Eiheiji,the "temple of eternal peace," is one of Soto Zen'stwo head temples. It is located deep in the mountains near the rugged west coast of Japan, not far from Fukui City.
 Dogen zenji,the founder of Eiheiji,was born in 1200 A.D. When he was 24, he went to China and devoted himself to true Zen practice under the strict guidance of Nyojozenji at Mt.Tendo.After having "dropped off both body and mind," realizing the wayof the Buddha, he returned home in 1228. He lived at Kenninji templefor 3 years,then founded his first temple, Kosho-Horinji, in Uji, Kyoto.
 In 1244 Dogen zenji and his followers visited Shii-no-Sho in Echizen (now Fukui Prefecture) to build a mountain temple. He was offered land andother help for this by Yoshishige Hatano, a samurai who was oneof his most devotedlay followers. Dogen thus founded Eiheiji, where he devoted himselfto training his followers in the perfection of Zen practice inevery action of dailylife.
 He died on September 29, 1253, leaving a number of notedbooks including the Shobogenzo, Gakudo Yojinshu, and Eihei DaiShingi.
 Dogen zenjiユs authentic Zen has been scrupulously observed by his successors.Even today, both priests and lay people devote themselves to his practice of Shikan-toza ("just sitting").


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