Travel Deeper: Experience Zen Meditation in Kyoto
Find stillness and calm in Kyoto’s tranquil Shunkoin Temple
This Zen experience will allow guests to have Shunkoin's Hojo, an Important Cultural Property, all to themselves.
Guests enter through the Karamon Gate, normally only used for events. The experience is led by Takashi Kawakami, the temple's abbot. Guests begin with guided meditation, followed by regularly-scheduled zazen meditation. The last part of the meditation is called nanso, which was practiced by Hakuin Huizaku, the founder of the Rinzai sect of Zen Buddhism.
Next, guests will see the Hojo Front Garden—which was modeled after Ise Grand Shrine in the late Edo period (1603-1867)—gold sliding door paintings by Eigaku Kano, and learn more about the history of the temple. Then, special tea ceremony is held using EN TEA's with decorations and utensils specially made for this experience in contemporary Kyoto workshops such as Asahiyaki, Kaikado, Kinmizutsuji, and Karacho.
At the end of the experience, you will enjoy matcha green tea served in a bowl made by Toyosai Matsubayashi, a 16th generation potter from Asahiyaki, who created the bowl specifically for this experience.
Zen is culture. Enrich yourself with a window into the past, present, and future of this culture, which can only be experienced here, in Kyoto.
The temple takes on a new life at night. Hojo Front Garden is lit up by colorful lights and the gold sliding door paintings are illuminated by paper lanterns.
This is a private experience only available by reservation. The agenda and time schedule can be adjusted to suit the guest’s needs. Tea ceremony, calligraphy classes, vegetarian cuisine, and Japanese harp performances are also available with an additional fee.
Access: Take the local train from Shin-Osaka Station to Hanazono Station (about 40 mins.).
Myoshinji Temple complex, Shunkoin Temple
42 Hanazono Myoshinji-cho, Ukyo-ku, Kyoto-shi, Kyoto-fu
approx. 120 min. or more