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Ichijoji Kasai13bs4272.jpg
Japanese
Buddhism

Schools

Tendai • Shingon
Pure Land • Zen
Nichiren

Founders

Saichō • Kūkai
Hōnen • Shinran
Dōgen • Eisai • Ingen
Nichiren

Sacred Texts

Avatamsaka Sutra
Lotus Sutra
Prajnaparamita
Heart Sutra
Infinite Life Sutra
Glossary of
Japanese Buddhism

Enkū (円空 ?) (1632–1695) was a Japanese Buddhist monk and sculptor during the early Edo period. Born in Mino Province (present-day Gifu Prefecture), who wandered all over Japan, helping the poor along the way. During his travels, he carved some 120,000 wooden statues of the Buddha. No two were alike. Many of the statues were crudely carved from tree stumps or scrap wood with a few strokes of a hatchet. Some were given to comfort those who had lost family members, others to guide the dying on their journeys to the afterlife. Thousands of these wooden statues remain today all over Japan, especially in Hida and Gifu.

Further reading

Alphen, Jan Van [et al.] Enku 1632-1695. Timeless Images from 17th Century Japan. Antwerpen, Etnografisch Museum., 1999, 192pp., 9 essays, very richly illustrated

External links


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