Kitazawa-１６ Hiraizumi, Nishiiwai District, Iwate 029-4102.
Mid-MAR to OCT daily 8-17.
NOV to mid-MAR daily 8-16:30.
Adults JPY 500, Children (12-17) 100, Children (0-11) free.
Groups (30+): one free entry per 30 persons.
|Light:||Incandescent Electric Light System|
|Guided tours:||self guided|
|Address:||Takkounoiwaya Bishamondo, Kitazawa-１６ Hiraizumi, Nishiiwai District, Iwate 029-4102, Tel: +81-191-46-4931, Fax: +81-191-34-9911.|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|801||temple built by Sakanoue no Tamuramaro to thank the god of war Bishamon.|
|11th century||Minamoto no Yoriyoshi and later his son Yoshiie offered prayers at Iwaya and gave land in thanks.|
|1189||Minamoto no Yoritomo gave thanks here after defeating his half brother Yoshitsune in the nearby battle of Koromogawa.|
|1490||burned down but immediately rebuilt.|
|1615||Date Masamune rebuilt the Bishamondô and gave lands.|
|1946||fire spread from a neighboring farm and engulfed the Bishamondô.|
|1961||temple was rebuilt.|
The cave temple 達谷窟 毘沙門堂 (Takkoku no Iwaya Temple) was built into a overhanging cliff face. The Hall of Bishamon is a red wooden temple which blocks the entrance to the cave behind, where
In the 8th century the 蝦夷征伐 (Emishi Seibatsu), a people native to the north of Honshū, were subjugated by the expanding Japanese Empire. The warlord Akurô Takamaro had his headquarters in a fortress in the cavern at Takkoku. They made a lot of trouble like tormenting people, kidnapping women, stealing, and were generally violent. The provincial government was unable to cope with the situation. The 50th Emperor Kanmu sent the court noble 坂上 田村麻呂 Sakanoue no Tamuramaro (*758–✝811) as general to subjugate the barbarians. Akurô Takamaro was defeated in 801 and peace restored. To thank the god of war Bishamon, Sakanoue no Tamuramaro ordered the construction of a temple in the style of Kyoto’s Kiyiomizudera in the cave. He installed 108 statues of Bishamon and called it Iwaya Bishamondô (Bishamon Cave Temple).
The current temple is the fifth on the same location, because it burned down several times. It is still dedicated to Bishamon, a god of war who protects those born in the Year of the Tiger. People pray for wealth, a good position in the company, for meeting a suitable partner, for fertility, and for success in studying. Prayers to Bishamon are thought to be very effective.