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The Info List - Mount Kōya



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MOUNT KōYA (高野山, Kōya-san) is the name of mountains in Wakayama Prefecture to the south of Osaka
Osaka
. Also, Kōya-san is a modifying word for Kongōbu-ji (金剛峯寺), the home temple and ecclesiastical headquarters of the Koyasan Shingon school. There is no mountain officially called Kōya-san (高野山) in Japan.

First settled in 819 by the monk Kūkai , Mt. Kōya is primarily known as the world headquarters of the Kōyasan Shingon sect of Japanese Buddhism
Japanese Buddhism
. Located in an 800 m high valley amid the eight peaks of the mountain (which was the reason this location was selected, in that the terrain is supposed to resemble a lotus plant), the original monastery has grown into the town of Kōya , featuring a university dedicated to religious studies and 120 temples, many of which offer lodging to pilgrims. The mountain is home to the following famous sites:

* Okunoin (奥の院), the mausoleum of Kūkai , surrounded by an immense graveyard (the largest in Japan)

* Danjogaran (壇上伽藍), a heartland of Mt. Kōya. Gara is a name for a area that has seven areas, a Main hall, a pagoda, a scripture storage, a bell tower, a lecture hall, monk's quarter and a Dining hall. Danjo Garan is one of the 2 sacred spots around the Mount Kōya.

* Konpon Daitō (根本大塔), a pagoda that according to Shingon doctrine represents the central point of a mandala covering not only Mt. Kōya but all of Japan

* Kongōbu-ji (金剛峯寺), the head temple of the Kōyasan Shingon Buddhism *