Gantoku Temple


Kawachi Province

Jitsugo served as a monk of the Jōdō Shinshū, or True Pure Land School of Buddhism, during the Sengoku period.  Jitsugo served as the abbot of the Gantoku Temple in Kawachi Province.

From his youth, Jitsugo was sent for adoption by Rengo, the abbot of the Honsen Temple in Kaga and his older brother of a different mother.  In 1502, he underwent the rights to enter the priesthood.  In 1505, however, a plot was exposed by which monks in Kawachi sought to back Jitsugo’s natural older brother, Jikken, as the high priest in an event known as the Kawachi Disturbance.  In 1508, after Rengo had a natural son named Jikkyō, Jitsugo was shunned.  In 1513, he became the chief priest in the Kiyosawa quarters at the Gantoku Temple in the village of Tsurugi in the Ishikawa District of Kaga Province.

Renjun, the guardian and maternal grandfather of Shōnyo (the tenth high priest of the Hongan Temple) adopted a policy to strengthen control over disciples by the high priest.  In 1531, opposition by Rengo and other monks in Kaga led to an uprising known as the Dai-shō ikki.  The Dai ikki were comprised of the Chōshō Temple and the Hongaku Temple who obeyed the orders of the high priest of the Hongan Temple, Shimotsuma Raishū, while the Shō ikki consisted of the Three Temples of Kaga who were branded as rebels and purged for recognizing (albeit nominally) the authority of the kokushu, or provincial lords of Kaga – the Togashi clan.

Owing to Jitsugo’s support for the Shō ikki, the Gantoku Temple in Kiyosawa was burned down.  Together with Rengo, Jitsugo was excommunicated from the temple and fled to Noto Province.  Jitsugo’s uncle on his mother’s side, Hatakeyama Ietoshi, invaded Kaga on the pretext of supporting Jitsugo, but he died in battle.

After residing in Sakai under difficult circumstances, Rengo died.  In 1550, Jitsugo received a pardon just before the death of Renjun.  During the Eiroku era (1558 to 1570), Jitsugo moved to the the Furuhashi quarters in Kawachi and, later, renamed the Furuhashi quarters to the Gantoku Temple.  In 1576, the Gantoku Temple was designated as with the temple rank of inge.  On 11/25 of Tenshō 11 (1583), Jitsugo died at the age of ninety-two.

Known as a cultured individual, Jitsugo wrote numerous texts including anecdotes of Rennyo, the eighth high priest of the Hongan Temple.  He is also known for authoring accounts of the Kaga Ikkō-ikki, or uprisings by Ikkō monks in Kaga Province.