Experience Traditional Japanese Culture Through Buddhism at Kohgen Festival in Meguro & Nakameguro

23.April.2018 | SPOT

Kohgen is a festival focused on Buddhism held at shrines and temples in Japan where people can experience traditional Japanese culture. The next events are set to take place at Shokakuji Temple in Nakameguro on May 5 and Ryusenji TempleGohyakurakanji Temple and Banryuji Temple in Meguro on May 6.

 

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Kohgen works towards allowing people to feel the true essence and root of Japan’s rich culture. The festival takes place over a huge distance every year, with 2018 marking its eighth run.

 

お経 修行体験 フェス 向源 目黒 中目黒

 

お経 修行体験 フェス 向源 目黒 中目黒

On Saturday May 5 at Shokakuji Temple, there will be performances from young rakugo entertainers in their 20s and 30s in the main hall, a chance to hear three priests chanting Buddhist sutras, and a string of experienced-based workshops like making goshuincho shrine and temple stamp books, ascetic practices and more.

 

お経 修行体験 フェス 向源 目黒 中目黒

On Sunday May 6 in Meguro, there’ll be a talk show by a Buddhist picture artists at Ryusenji Temple, an opportunity to learn about philosophy with a chief priest at Gohyakurakanji Temple, and ikebana flower arranging, calligraphy, and a viola performance at Banryuji Temple. There’s plenty more scheduled too, with each temple having its own particular events.

 

お経 修行体験 フェス 向源 目黒 中目黒

Also, for 2018, those who haven’t bought tickets can enter the festival too. There are free events happening at the tent area, and a catering area where you can enjoy food.

 

お経 修行体験 フェス 向源 目黒 中目黒

In addition, ghost story telling priest Daiun Miki has also been invited to Shokakuji Temple in Nakameguro. He’ll be telling one of his ghost stories.

 

お経 修行体験 フェス 向源 目黒 中目黒

For more details on this fun-packed festival, make sure to check the official Kohgen website.

 

■Information

Kohgen

Venues: Shokakuji Temple / Ryusenji Temple / Gohyakurakanji Temple / Banryuji Temple

 

Dates/Times:

May 4, 2018 @ Shokakuji Temple (Festival Eve: 19:00-21:00)

May 5, 2018 @ Shokakuji Temple (09:00-20:00)

May 6, 2018 @ Ryusenji Temple / Gohyakurakanji Temple / Banryuji Temple (09:00-19:00)

 

Price: Free Entry / ¥2,000-¥6,500 (tax incl.) for each workshop and course

No. of People: Different for each workshop and course

Applications: Via “Peatix” online ticket application

 

Access:

Shokakuji Temple: 3-1-6 Nakameguro, Meguro-ku, Tokyo

Ryusenji Temple: 3-20-26, Shita-Meguro, Meguro-ku, Tokyo

Gohyakurakanji Temple: 3-20-11, Shita-Meguro, Meguro-ku, Tokyo

Banryuji Temple: 3-4-4, Shita-Meguro, Meguro-ku, Tokyo

 

 

Website: http://kohgen.org/

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    Giouji Temple
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    Kan’in-no-miya Residence

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    Official Website: https://kan-in-nomiya-teiato.jp/eng/

     

     

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    Photos by Rie

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    JEREMY&JEMIMAH is a shop selling cute and colourful cotton candy. Their staple Wata-Hako cotton candy comes in 10 different flavours! In the photo we have yuzu, rose and matcha flavours. Of the two branches of the store, there is one along Furukawacho Shopping Street where you order your cotton candy for takeout, and another in Yasaka that serves cotton candy on long sticks.

    We picked up a few different ones since there are so many flavours and designs. It was fun lining them up to take a picture.

     

    We took them home to eat and they stayed nice and fluffy the whole way back. The yuzu one tasted a little herbal, like it was healthy for you.

     

    ▼JEREMY&JEMIMAH (Furukawacho Shopping Street Branch)

    Address: Furukawacho Shopping Street, 444-3 Hachikenchō, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto

    Opening Hours: 11:00-17:00

    Official Website: http://www.jeremyjemimah.com/

     

     

    ROCCA & FRIENDS TRUCK

    At ROCCA & FRIENDS TRUCK, you can order these iced dessert matcha and houjicha lattes which are topped with yatsuhashi―a confection sold in Kyoto―shaped into various sights across the city including Kyoto Tower, Hōkanji Temple, Daimonji, a Torii gate, and more.

     

    I ordered the matcha latte. The drink itself isn’t sweet at all so you can enjoy the full original rich and bitter flavour of the matcha. The fresh cream however is quite sweet so you can mix it into the drink as much as you want to get your desired flavour.

    There are lots of great spots in the area such as the Hōkanji Temple pagoda and Yasaka Shrine so  you can snap some great sightseeing photos♡

     

    ▼ROCCA & FRIENDS TRUCK

    Address: 370 Yasaka Kamimachi, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    Opening Hours: 9:00-18:00

    Official Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rocca.truck/

     

     

    Jumondo

    We also visited Jumondo which sells Kyoto-style dango, or “sweet dumplings.” We shared three different orders amongst three people: Danraku (団楽) which comes as a set with a drink, Dandan (だんだん) which comes with matcha, and Zenzai to Aburi Kuri Kinton (ぜんざいと炙り栗きんとん).

     

    Once you order, the dango are made fresh so are served hot and chewy. Each dumpling is on the small side so are nice and easy to eat.

     

    The Danraku comes with five different dumplings including sweet soy glaze, mashed sweet bean paste, soy sauce and black sesame seed, fried, and white miso. The Dandan comes with three types of your choice and a wafer filled with mashed sweet bean paste. The Zenzai to Aburi Kuri Kinton with mashed sweet potatoes with sweetened chestnut dango. The final one comes with matcha which can be served hot or cold.

     

    Everything was tasty but my personal favourite was the yuzu flavoured white miso dumpling.

    The one that everybody raved about was the Zenzai which is a thick soup that the dango are placed into. These dumplings are bigger, not too sweet and light. The soup went really well with the dango, it was super tasty.

     

    ▼Jumondo

    Address: 76 Tamamizuchō, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto

    TEL: 075-525-3733

    Official Website: http://jumondo.jp/index.html

     

     

    Kyo Yasaka Pudding

    Yasaka is a particularly popular tourist spot in Kyoto, and that’s where the cute purin shop Kyo Yasaka Pudding is located.

    Purin is a type of custard purring sold in Japan. The first pudding we picked up was the store’s recommended option named after the store itself, the Kyo Yasaka Pudding. It contains a transparent lemon and honey flavoured jelly inside which there are small and colourful agar agar balls and mango jelly balls.

     

    It has an enjoyable texture and a refreshing sweetness that I’ve never experienced before with other purin. It’s very tasty!

     

    There are five flavours to choose from, the others being hard, smooth, matcha and black soy bean, and houjicha black soy bean. All are served in tiny cute jars. Not only do they look great, they taste amazing too. Each is made with ingredients sourced in Kyoto including the milk, Uji matcha, houjicha, and black soy beans.

    They also sell soft serve ice cream topped with candy balls, very Kyoto-like! You can choose from vanilla, matcha, or a mix of both. I think it’ll be really fun if you can snap a photo of your ice cream with one of Yasaka’s stylish locations in the background! Speaking of which, there was a cute illustration on the wall of the store so we took our photo there.

     

    Be sure to pay a visit to Kyo Yasaka Pudding to pick up your own pudding whether as a souvenir or for yourself.

     

    ▼Kyo Yasaka Pudding

    Address: 87-4 Hoshinochō, Higashiyama Ward, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture

    TEL: 075-533-8338

    Official Website: https://kyo-yasaka-pudding.co.jp/

     

     

    Kyoto is full of shops selling desserts and sweets perfect to walk around and munch on while you walk its ancient streets, or to take home as a souvenir. Enjoy all the tasty things you can during your visit to this beautiful city♡

     

    Photos/Text: meme

    Translation: Joshua Kitosi-Isanga

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