Temple 30, Zenrakuji

第30番札所 百々山 東明院 善楽寺
【History of the temple】
This area, about six kilometers from Kochi Castle and four kilometers from JR Kochi Station, was once called Kannabego and was the first prosperous area in Tosa (Kochi). According to legend, Kobo Daishi came here in the Daido era (806-810) and founded Zenrakuji for the veneration of Takakamo Daimyojin, the shrine of Tosa (Kochi), and established the temple as part of the Shikoku Pilgrimage.

Since that time, the temple has flourished as a temple of the syncretism between Shintoism and Buddhism, protecting Buddhism and teaching people about Shintoism and Buddhism. Especially during the reign of Tosa's second feudal lord, Yamauchi Tadayoshi, the temple prospered under the patronage of the warrior class. However, the temple's fortunes changed drastically with haibutsu kishaku, the government-sponsored anti-Buddhist movement that started at the beginning of the Meiji era (1868 - 1912), and it continued to suffer through 1929. There followed a period of turmoil for the temple. For some years, there were nokyosho (temple stamp offices) at two separate places. This conflict was finally settled, and Zenrakuji was recognized as the true 30th temple of the Shikoku Pilgrimage on January 1, 1994.

The Daishido, located to the left of the Hondo, was built during the Taisho period (1912-1926). The statue of Kobo Daishi here is known as Yakuyoke Daishi. It is said to have power when visited during an unlucky year or when praying for traffic safety. There is also a Koyasu Jizodo on the temple grounds. Inside the hall, there is a statue of Jizo Bosatsu (Earth Treasury Bodhisattva) with a gentle face, said to have been created by Kobo Daishi. Legend has it that Kobo Daishi prayed for a pregnant woman who was suffering from a difficult labor and helped her to have a safe delivery. Veneration of this image is said to be beneficial for easy childbirth and safe delivery. Many people also pray to Jizo for babies who passed away.

The front of the temple has an open atmosphere. It is an old temple that prospered as a bettōji (temple to maintain a shrine) of Tosa Ichinomiya Shrine.

・Umejizo (plum-viewing Jizo)
This Jizo was built in 1816 and is located on the left side of the Anjizodo. It is a rare Jizo. It has power for curing illnesses and troubles from the neck up. In recent years, many visitors have come to the temple to pray for healing from brain diseases and neuroses, and to pray for success in school entrance exams.
This carving representing an evil demon supports a stone water basin. It is believed that its face is based on the image of a demon on the statue of Bishamonten.
The Hondo was reconstructed in 1983.

【Annual Events】
・Zenrakuji Hatsumatsuri (First Festival): February 1
・Setsubun Yakuyoke (Festival to ward off evil spirits): February 3
・Hana Matsuri (Buddha’s Birthday): April 8 (sweet tea served by the women's club)
Address 〒781-8131 高知県高知市一宮しなね2丁目23-11
Telephone Number 088-846-4141
DirectionsFrom the Kochi Interchange, head toward downtown Kochi on the Kochi North Loop Road and turn left onto Prefectural Route 384. Go about two kilometers, then turn left at the Ichinomiya Shrine bus stop. The temple is on the right at the end of the road.
Parking20 cars, 4 buses
Website Official website