Email Site Author Mark Schumacher Sign Up for Our Free Newsletter on Buddhist Statuary spacer
Follow on Social Media
My Wordpress Buddha Statues Blog Follow Me on Facebook Follow Me on Twitter Follow Me on Google + Follow Me on LinkedIn Follow Me on Youtube Free RSS Buddha News Feed 

Japanese Buddhism, Photo Dictionary of Japan's Shinto and Buddhist DivinitiesRETURN TO TOP PAGE of Japanese Buddhist Statuary A to Z Photo Library & Dictionary of Gods, Goddesses, Shinto Kami, Creatures, and DemonsCopyright and Usage PoliciesJump to Our Online Store Selling Handcrafted Statues
top line
spacer


QUICK START
Home: What's New
Buddha's Teachings
History & Timeline
Historical Buddha
Student's Guide
Teacher's Guide

DEITY GUIDES
Who's Who
Buddha
Bodhisattva
Myo-o
Shinto Kami
Shugendo
Stars & Planets
Tenbu (Deva)

OTHER GUIDES
About Site Author
Bibliography
Buddhism in Japan
Busshi Glossary
Carving Techniques
Cycle of Suffering
Drapery/Robe Guide
Mandala Guide
Mudra Guide
Objects Guide
Pilgrimage Guide
Shinto Guide
Statues by Artist
Statues by Era
Symbols Guide
Terminology

Buddhist-Artwork.com, our sister site, offers online sales of hand-carved wood Buddha statues.
Buddhist-Artwork.com, our sister site, offers online sales of hand-carved wood Buddha statues.

A TO Z INDEX
3 Element Stele
3 Monkeys
4 Bosatsu
4 Celestial Emblems
4 Heavenly Kings
5 (Number Five)
5 Elements
5 Tathagata
5 Tier Pagoda
5 Wisdom Kings
6 Jizo
6 Kannon
6 Realms
6 Nara Schools
7 Lucky Gods
7 Nara Temples
8 Legions
8 Zodiac Patrons
10 Kings of Hell
12 Devas
12 Generals
12 Zodiac Animals
13 Butsu (Funerals)
28 Legions
28 Constellations
30 Buddha of Month
30 Kami of Month
33 Kannon
About the Author
Agyo
Aizen
Amano Jyaku
Amida Nyorai
Apsaras
Arakan (Rakan)
Arhat (Rakan)
Ashuku Nyorai
Asuka Era Art Tour
Asura (Ashura)
Baku (Eats Dreams)
Bamboo
Benzaiten (Benten)
Bibliography
Big Buddha
Birushana Nyorai
Bishamon-ten
Bodhisattva
Bonbori Artwork
Bosatsu Group
Bosatsu of Mercy
Bosatsu on Clouds
Buddha (Historical)
Buddha Group
Buddha Statues
Busshi (Sculptors)
Calligraphy
Celestial Emblems
Celestial Maidens
Children Patrons
Classifying
Color Red
Confucius
Contact Us
Daibutsu
Daijizaiten
Daikokuten
Dainichi Nyorai
Daruma (Zen)
Datsueba (Hell Hag)
Deva (Tenbu)
Donations
Dosojin
Dragon
Drapery (Robes)
Early Buddhism Japan
Ebisu
Eight Legions
En no Gyoja
Estores
Family Tree
Footprints of Buddha
Fox (Inari)
Fudo (Fudou) Myoo
Fugen Bosatsu
Fujin (Wind God)
Fukurokuju
Gakko & Nikko
Gardens
Gigeiten
Godai Nyorai
Goddess of Mercy
Goddesses
Gongen
Gravestones
Hachi Bushu
Hachiman
Hands (Mudra)
Hell (10 Judges)
Hell Hag (Datsueba)
Hell Scrolls
Henge
Hikyu (Lion Beast)
Holy Mountains
Ho-o (Phoenix)
Hotei
Idaten
Inari (Fox)
Ishanaten
Ishidoro (Ishidourou)
Jikokuten
Jizo Bosatsu
Jocho Busshi
Juni Shi
Juni Shinsho
Juni Ten
Junrei (Pilgrimage)
Jurojin
Juuzenji
Jyaki or Tentoki
Kaikei Busshi
Kamakura Buddhism
Kankiten
Kannon Bosatsu
Kappa
Kariteimo (Kishibojin)
Karura
Karyoubinga
Kendatsuba
Kichijouten
Kitchen Gods
Kishibojin (Kariteimo)
Kitsune (Oinari)
Kokuzo Bosatsu
Koujin (Kojin)
Komokuten
Korean Buddhism
Koushin
Lanterns (Stone)
Links
Magatama
Making Statues
Mandara (Mandala)
Maneki Neko
Marishiten (Marici)
Miroku Bosatsu
Monju Bosatsu
Monkeys
Moon Lodges
Mother Goddess
Mudra (Hands)
Myoken (Pole Star)
Myo-o
Nara Era Art Tour
Newsletter Sign Up
Nijuhachi Bushu
Nikko & Gakko
Ninpinin
Nio Protectors
Nyorai Group
Objects & Symbols
Onigawara
Phoenix (Ho-o)
Pilgrimage Guide
Pottery
Protective Stones
Raigo Triad
Raijin (Thunder God)
Rakan (Arhat)
Red Clothing
Reincarnation
Robes (Drapery)
Rock Gardens
Sanbo Kojin
Sanno Gongen
Sarutahiko
Sculptors (Busshi)
Seishi Bosatsu
Sendan Kendatsuba
Seven Lucky Gods
Shachi, Shachihoko
Shaka Nyorai
Shape Shifters
Shichifukujin
Shijin (Shishin)
Shinra Myoujin
Shinto Clergy
Shinto Concepts
Shinto Kami
Shinto Main Menu
Shinto Sects
Shinto Shrines
Shishi (Lion)
Shitenno
Shoki
Shomen Kongo
Shotoku Taishi
Shrines
Shugendo
Siddhartha
Six States
Star Deities
Stone Gardens
Stone Graves
Stone Lanterns
Stones (Top Menu)
Suijin (Water Kami)
Symbols & Objects
Tamonten
Taishakuten
Tanuki
Temples
Temple Lodging
Tenbu Group
Tengu
Tennin & Tennyo
Tentoki or Jyaki
Terminology
Tiantai Art Tour
Tibetan Carpets
Tibet Photos
Tibetan Tanka
Transmigration
Ungyo
Unkei Busshi
Videos on Buddhism
Water Basin
Weapons
Wheel of Life
Yakushi Nyorai
Yasha (Yaksha)
Zao Gongen
Zen (Daruma)
Zen Art Tour
Zodiac Calendar
Zochoten

 



 
spacer

Seven Lucky Gods of Japan

THIS IS A SIDE PAGE
Return to Seven Lucky Gods Main Menu
or Return to Japanese Pilgrimage Guide

Kamakura Pilgrimage to Seven Lucky Deities
Shichi 七 means seven, fuku 福 means luck, and jin 人 means god

 

SEVEN LUCKY GODS MENU
Intro Page
Benzaiten
  Bishamonten
Daikokuten
Ebisu
Fukurokuju
Hotei
Jurōjin

Related Pages
Baku (Eats Nightmares)
 Kamakura Pilgrimage maroon-check-7-luckies
Photo Montage
Seven Gods Estore

 

Hotei at Jochiji Temple in Kamakura, photo by Gotoh-san
Hotei at Jōchiji Temple 浄智寺
Kita Kamakura.
Photo this site.

fukurokuju mask, goryo jinja shrine in kamakura, photo by gotoh-san
Fukurokuju Mask
Goryō Jinja Shrine 御霊神社, Kamakura.
Photo this site.

Jurojin at Myoryuji Temple in Kamakura

spacerSeven Sites in Kamakura
Most people no longer walk the circuit in its entirety , but instead combine their feet with cars, buses, trains, or bicycles. Using any combination of the above, one can complete this circuit in four or five hours. To document their journey, some pilgrims purchase a rectangular stamping sheet at their first location, then present it to each successive temple or shrine for stamping. Although the sites are assigned numbers, participants can visit them in any order (the only prerequisite is that “all” are visited). For example, most pilgrims combine Hase Dera (#2) and Goryō Shrine (#6), both on the western side of town, and both within a short walking distance of the Big Buddha of Kamakura. This pilgrimage need not be completed in a fixed timeframe. Instead, participants can perform the circuit in multiple journeys spread out over any length of time.
  1. Myōgonzan Hongakuji Temple 妙厳本覚寺 -- Ebisu, the god of the ocean, fishing folk, sailors, commerce, and fair dealing. Japanese origin. Learn about the temple here. One hundred and fifty meters southeast of JR Kamakura Station. See note about special Ebisu festivals in Kamakura.
     
  2. Hase-dera Temple 長谷寺 -- Daikokuten, the god of agriculture, farming, wealth, and commerce. Also the god of five cereals. Origin India (Skt. = Mahakala). The Daikoku effigy here is a wood statue dated to 1412 AD. Learn about the temple here. Three hundred meters northwest of Hase Station on the Enoden Line.
     
  3. Hōkaiji (Hokaiji) Temple 宝戒寺 -- Bishamonten, the god of treasure, scourge of evil doers, defender of the Buddhist faith, and patron of warriors. Origin India (Skt. = Vaisravana). An-yo-in Temple 安養院 used to be on the list until 1997. Learn about Hōkaiji here or learn about An-yo-in here. Four hundred meters northeast of JR Kamakura Station.
     
  4. Tsurugaoka Hachimangū Shrine 鶴岡八幡宮 -- Benzaiten, the goddess of music, fine arts, beauty, eloquence, and literature. Origin India (Skt. = Sarasvati). The only female in the group of seven. Learn about the shrine here. Two hundred meters northeast of JR Kamakura Station.
     
  5. Jōchiji (Jochiji) Temple 浄智寺 -- Hotei, the god of contentment, happiness, bartenders, and all classes of people. Origin China (Chn. = Putai, Budai). Thought to be an incarnation of Miroku Bosatsu), Hotei is widely known in the West as the Fat, Laughing Buddha. Learn about the temple here. Some 400 meters south of Kita-Kamakura Station
     
  6. Goryō (Goryo) Jinja Shrine 御霊神社 -- Fukurokuju, the god of wealth (fuku 福), happiness (roku 禄), and longevity (ju 寿). Origin Chinese Taoism. A personification of the southern polar star (Jp. = Nankyokusei 南極星). Learn about the shrine here. Three hundred meters west of Hase Station on the Enoden Line.
     
  7. Myōryūji (Myoryuji) Temple 妙隆寺 -- Jurōjin, the god of wisdom and longevity. Origin Chinese Taoism. A personification of the southern polar star (Jp. = Nankyokusei 南極星) and a Chinese Taoist sennin 仙人 (immortal) of China's Northern Song 北宋 period. Learn about the temple here. Three hundred meters northeast of JR Kamakura Station.

Note
Ebisu Festivals in Kamakura
When: Annually from January 1 to 3, and January 10.
Events: People come to pray for the prosperity of their business and a good economy in the coming year. Fuku-Musume (fortune maidens) in beautiful traditional costume sell lucky bamboo ornaments (Fuku-Zasa) during the "Ebisu-Ichi" market from January 1 to January 3 at the Hongaku-ji Temple, home to the deity Ebisu. January 10 is the day of the main "Ebisu-Taisai" festival, with the New Year "Fuku-Mochi" lucky-rice-cake-making ritual performed from noon following the "Hon-Ebisu" Buddhist prayer service held in the morning. For details, contact Hongaku-ji Temple (Tel: 0467-22-0490). For other events, please see Kanagawa Japan Tourist Guide.

Multi-site Pilgrimages
The multi-site format of the Seven Lucky Gods Pilgrimage is one of the most prevalent pilgrimage formats in Japan. Multi-site circuits involve a number of sacred places linked together numerically, with each location devoted to the same single deity or to a group of related deities. This is known as honzon junrei 本尊巡礼 — literally to wander around (jun) to worship (rei) the principle deity (honzon). In order to complete the pilgrimage, participants are obliged to visit every single site on the circuit. Each site is equally important and none serve as the center or definitional locus. Although the sites are assigned numbers, participants can visit them in any order (the only prerequisite is that “all” are visited). Multi-site pilgrimages need not be completed in a fixed timeframe. Instead, participants can perform the circuit in multiple journeys spread out over any length of time. In bygone times, pilgrims often wore special pilgrimage garments. Today most wear everyday clothes and carry a book (nōkyō-chō) that can be purchased at any site along the route. This book is then stamped (for a small fee) at each site visited. These stamps (shu-in) are often very artistic, but their main function is to serve as a testimony to the pilgrim’s completion of the journey.

Seven Lucky Gods of Japan - Poster Image found at Myoryuji Temple

ABOVE. Modern-day poster (2008). Found at Myōryūji Temple 妙隆寺 in Kamakura. The temple also sells this image as a shikishi 色紙 (colored sheet of paper used for calligraphic poems or paintings). Myōryūji Temple is the 7th site on the Kamakura Pilgrimage to the 7 Lucky Gods. It honors Jurōjin. To document your pilgrimage, buy a rectangular stamping sheet, called a kinen-shikishi 記念色紙, made of very stiff cardboard. You buy this at your first destination (1,000 yen), then at each successive stop in the circuit of seven, hand it to the temple office for stamping.

 

OTHER PILGRIMAGES TO THE SEVEN LUCKY GODS
By the 19th century, most major cities had developed special pilgrimage circuits for the seven. These pilgrimages remain well trodden in contemporary times, especially during the first three days of January. But today, many people use cars, buses, and trains to move between the sites rather than walking. To document their journey, some pilgrims purchase a rectangular stamping sheet at their first location -- called a Kinen Shikishi 記念色紙 -- then present it to each successive temple or shrine for stamping. An example of a fully stamped kinen shikishi is shown below.

A fully stamped SHIKISHI from the Yanaka Shichifukujin Meguri or Pilgrimage to the Seven Lucky Gods in Tokyo's Yanaka district. Modern, early 21st century.
Stamping sheet from the Yanaka Shichifukujin Meguri 谷中七福神巡り or
“Pilgrimage to the Seven Lucky Gods in Tokyo's Yanaka district.” The Yanaka pilgrimage is
reportedly the oldest circuit devoted to the seven in Japan. Photo courtesy this J-site.

THIS IS A SIDE PAGE
Return to Seven Lucky Gods Main Menu
or Return to Japanese Pilgrimage Guide

spacer
bottom bar

Copyright 1995 - 2014. Mark Schumacher. Email Mark.
All stories and photos, unless specified otherwise, by Schumacher.
www.onmarkproductions.com     |     make a donation

Please do not copy these pages or photos into Wikipedia or elsewhere without proper citation !