Saturday, August 28, 2010
Matarajin Shrine is located next to the main hall in Gakuen-Ji Temple, though the shrine originally stood behind Izumo Taisha.
It was dismantled and carried up into the mountains probably in the 16th Century.
Matarajin ( or Madarajin or Madarashin) was brought back from China in the 9th Century by the Tendai monk Ennin as a protector of the Amida Sutra, and so has strong links with Tendai. Gakuen-Ji is a Tendai temple.
Attached to the front of the shrine is a buddhist building that houses 2 statues. The building is opened once every 33 years.
Some old statues of Matarajin have 3 heads, Dakiniten, Shoten, and Benzaiten.
Dakiniten is one of the constituent influences on the kami Inari, and next to Matarjin Shrien is a small Inari shrine.