About Myojoin

Myojoin: A Temple Enshrining the Tokugawa Shoguns’ Tablets

Myojoin Temple was erected here on a secluded piece on land in 1763 by the 46th Chief Abbot on Zojoji Temple, Venerable Jogetsu, for the purpose of installing the memorial tablet of the 9th Shogun on the Tokugawa Family Iyeshige for whom Ven. Jogetsu performed his funeral. As an attached temple of Zojoji, Myojoin held the Ming Dynasty Era complete collection of Buddhist texts and so became a central place of study as an attached seminary for Jodo Shu Buddhist Denomination. As such, it became well known as an academic center and practice center for the nenbutsu.

It is the first of 25 sacred sites in the Tokyo area associated with Honen Shonin(1133-1212), the founder of Jodo Shu, and houses the statue of Honen made by himself and given to a samurai follower Kumagai Naozane as an object of veneration and practice.

The Tokugawa Family eventually became devoted adherents of Myojoin and donated the memorial tablet of the 10th Shogun Iyeharu and numerous valuable artifacts. Myojoin also houses the pictorial biography of Honen called the Honen Shonin den ekotoba and other designated cultural properties, as well as the two mud buildings on the Kumano-do Shrine and Jodo-zo Library which are National Registered Cultural Properties of Japan.


The graves of renowned families such as those of Count Madenokoji and Baron Masana Maeda, who was a pioneer of industrial development in the Meiji Era, are also located at Myojoin.

The authentic Japanese garden of Tsukikage-en, which was originally made by Ven. Jogetsu in the 18th century and was repaired time after time, charms people today.

Located in the very central part of Tokyo, Myojoin still preserves the tradition of serene atmosphere and cultural heritage.

In commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the founding of Myojoin, the Temple planned the construction of whole temple buildings. The new Main Hall is a traditionally constructed wooden structure with modern technology. The new guest hall is a modern building which is designed for the public to access easily.

After the four-year project, the dedication ceremony was held on April 27, 2008 with the 87th Chief Abbot of Zojoji, Venerable Yuko Narita attending.