Shunjobo Chogen

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  • Born: 1121
  • Died: 1206
  • Japanese: 俊乗坊重源 (Shunjoubou Chougen)

The Jôdo-shû monk Shunjôbô Chôgen was a direct disciple of Hônen, and headed the reconstruction of Tôdai-ji following its destruction in the Genpei War.

Chôgen journeyed to China three times between 1167 and 1176. After Tôdai-ji was destroyed by Taira clan forces in the 1181 Siege of Nara, Chôgen was placed in charge of fundraising efforts (for the costs of the reconstruction) and of overseeing the reconstruction efforts themselves. The reconstruction was completed with a re-dedication ceremony in 1203, and incorporated elements of Chinese architectural styles, introduced to Japan by Chôgen.


  • Robert Morrell, "Zeami's Kasuga Ryûjin (Dragon God of Kasuga), or Myôe Shônin," Early Kamakura Buddhism: A Minority Report, Asian Humanities Press (1987), 103.