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Katsuo-ji Temple – Temple of Good Fortune and one of the 23 sacred places in Western Japan

Katsuoji Temple

Katsuo-ji Temple in Minoh City, Osaka Prefecture, is a temple of the Koyasan Shingon sect, and its mountain name is Ochozan. It is the 23rd temple on the pilgrimage to the 33 sacred places in the western part of Japan, its principal image is the eleven-faced thousand-armed Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva, and the temple boasts a 1300-year history. It is also the fifth of the twenty-seven sacred places in the Hōnen Shōnin 25 Sacred Sites (Hōnen Shōnin Nijūgōreijo), for which the temple is called Nikaidō. Known for the many Daruma dolls dedicated to the shrine, it attracts many worshippers from all over Japan. Visit during autumn and you will catch a glimpse of beautiful deep reed foliage.

1. What benefits does Katsuo-ji Temple offer?

It is believed to be beneficial to those wishing to win something. Daruma dolls praying for victory are believed to fulfill various wishes such as success in school, prosperity in business, fulfillment of love, and victory in sports.

In addition, memorial services for the deceased are also held at Katsuo-ji Temple.

Mizuko memorial service: Memorial services for children who died in stillbirth or miscarriage.
Ancestor memorial services: Memorial services for ancestors
Doll memorial service: Memorial service for cherished dolls

The above three memorial services are held daily, so those who wish to make a memorial service may first inquire at Katsuo-ji Temple.

2. Katsuo-ji Temple’s History

Katsuoji TempleThe origin of Katsuo-ji Temple dates back to the late Nara period. It is said that Zenchu and Zentaku, children of the Fujiwara family, built a hermitage in 727 where the future temple would be constructed.

Later, in 765, Kaisei, a prince of Emperor Kohito, studied under Zenchu and Zentaku and entered the Buddhist school. In 775, he built Maitreya Temple, the predecessor of Katsuo-ji Temple.

In 780, a Buddhist priest named Myokan visited Maitreya Temple and sculpted the eleven-faced thousand-armed Avalokitesvara Bodhisattva in about one month. This became the principal image of Katsuo-ji Temple.

Katsuo-ji Temple was once destroyed by fire in 1184 during the Genpei Civil War, but was later rebuilt in 1188. The Yakushido remains as it was then, and the gate and main hall were rebuilt by Toyotomi Hideyori to the present day.

3. Charms and red seals

As it is famous for its prayers for winning, there is a special amulet unique to Katsuo-ji Temple called Kachi no Daruma Mamori (the Victory Daruma Charm). The temple offers more than 20 different kinds of charms and amulets.

Victory Daruma Charm at Katsuo-ji Temple

Katsuoji TempleKatsuo-ji Temple is famous for its Kachi-Daruma, where visitors pray using a Daruma. To make a wish with the Kachi-Daruma, put your eye in the right eye of the Dharma while making your wish. If the wish has been fulfilled, put your eye in the left eye of the Daruma and dedicates the Daruma to the temple.

1) Choose the Victory Daruma

Katsuoji TempleSelect a Daruma that you feel is associated with you.
Daruma comes in different sizes, and as the size increases, so does the price.
No.10:2,000 yen
No.8:3,500 yen
No.7:5,000 yen
No.2: 70,000 yen

2) Clarify your goals and life purpose and write them on the Daruma

Katsuoji TempleWrite on the back of the Daruma the wish (goal) you want to achieve during the year. Beyond your goals, write your life purpose on the bottom of the Daruma.

3) Gratitude Time

Katsuoji TempleLight a few sticks of incense and express your gratitude for the people and things involved in this wish.

4) Incense

Katsuoji TempleInfuse the entire Daruma with gratitude that has been transformed into smoke.

5) Make a promise

Katsuoji TemplePromise yourself that you will spare no effort to make the wish you are praying for come true this time, and put your eye in the right eye of the Daruma (left side facing you).

6) Fulfillment (goal attainment)

When the wish comes true, an eye is placed in the left eye of the Daruma as a sign that the goal has been achieved.

7) Visit the temple

8) Dedicate the Daruma to the temple

Katsuoji TempleThese steps are used to pray for good luck when making a wish with the Daruma.

4. Katsuo-ji Temple Highlights

Katsuoji TempleThe best part of Katsuo-ji is the special nighttime lighting during the fall foliage season.Katsuoji TempleThe temple is usually crowded with visitors from mid-November to early December for the Maple Festival. The fusion of the red of the maple leaves and the lights shining in seven different colors creates a fantastic space that attracts many people. Hours are relatively early, from sunset to 7:30 pm, so visitors who want to enjoy the lights should arrive early.

Also, if you cannot make it in time or schedule for the special nighttime light-up, it is highly recommended to go during the daytime for the fall foliage. It is known as one of the best places in Kansai to view the autumn foliage, with visitors coming from far and wide to take in the beauty of the area. It is said that the leaves begin to change color from early November to mid-November, and the best time to view the leaves is from mid-November to early December. Why not take advantage of this time to enjoy the autumn air and the vividly colored red scenery with couples, families, and friends?

By the way, this is what the autumn leaves looked like last year.Katsuoji Temple

Katsuoji Temple

5. Katsuo-ji Temple is a great hiking spot

The route to Katsuo-ji Temple is said to be a popular climbing course with moderate incline and distance, making it easy for beginners to climb. Since this course is so popular among road bikers that it is called the sacred place of the Osaka Hokusetsu Hill Climb, it may be interesting to access the course while watching people enjoying hill climbing on the way to Katsuo-ji Temple.

6. Souvenirs

Katsuoji TempleIn the precincts of Katsuo-ji Temple, there is a tea house where you can take a short break if you are tired.Katsuoji TempleThere is a souvenir corner in this tea shop. It is very rare to find a temple that sells souvenirs, which is interesting in itself, but the products they sell are also unique, with products related to the Daruma.Katsuoji TempleYou can also buy a souvenir to commemorate your visit to Katsuo-ji Temple.

7. Katsuo-ji Temple Details

Address: 2914-1 Awaimatani, Minoh, Osaka, Japan
Tel: 072-721-7010
Entrance fee:
General Adults 400 yen
Children (elementary and middle school) 300 yen
Group adults (30 or more) 300 yen
Group children (junior high and high school) 200 yen
Group children (elementary and middle school) 100 yen
Hours of worship:
Weekdays 8:00-17:00
Sat. 8:00-17:30
Sundays and holidays 8:00-18:00

8. Access

■ Trains and buses:
From Hankyu Senri Line Kitasenri Station or Kita-Osaka Kyuko Line Senri-Chuo Station
Hankyu Bus No. 29 bound for Hokusetsu Reien/Kibogaoka 4-chome
(3 round trips on weekdays, 6 round trips on weekends and holidays)
Get off at “Katsuoji” bus stop.

From Meishin Expressway “Ibaraki Interchange”, via Route 171, turn right at “Shimizu” intersection (about 15 minutes)

From Suita Interchange on Kinki Expressway, Chugoku Expressway or Meishin Expressway, via Chuo Loop Road or Route 423, turn right at Shirashima Intersection, turn left at Kurio-Gaiin Intersection (about 10 minutes).

From the Ikeda Interchange on the Chugoku Expressway, via the Chuo Loop Road and Route 423, turn right at the Shirashima Intersection and left at the Kuryu Gaiin Intersection (approximately 10 minutes).

Note: For large vehicles via Route 171, please come from the Shimizu and Kayano intersections.

Parking: Yes (about 350 cars)
Fare: standard car
Up to 2 hours: 500 yen
Every hour thereafter: 100 yen
Large and medium-sized buses: 2,000 yen
Small and micro buses: 1,000 yen

9. Summary

When it comes to Katsuo-ji Temple, Daruma dolls are a must, so be sure to experience the Kachi-Daruma Prayer! We recommend this because you can enjoy praying while writing with your eyes rolling, which gives you a very fresh feeling. There are also Daruma dolls throughout the temple grounds, and it is great fun just to walk around the grounds looking at the various expressions of the Daruma dolls. In the coming season, you can also enjoy the precincts of the temple decorated with the colors of autumn leaves.
Located relatively close to Osaka City, we encourage you to visit and experience Katsuo-ji Temple.

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Introduction of writer

I was born Kyoto and I live in Osaka . I love delicious food and I love eating.