Daruma-ji Temple

Daruma-ji Temple

According to the Nihon Shoki – known as the first Japanese history book – in December 613 Prince Shotoku came across a hungry man lying on the side of the road. Although he gave the man food, drink, and clothing, the man died.

The saddened Prince Shotoku made a grave for the man and had him interred, but it is said that when the Prince returned to the grave some days later, the man's corpse had vanished, and the clothes the Prince had given him had been placed neatly on his coffin.

Later, the hungry man whom Prince Shotoku had helped came to be thought of as an incarnation of Bodhidharma Daishi ("Daruma"). The main hall of Darumaji Temple is built on the site said to be the grave of Bodhidharma.

The wooden figure of Prince Shotoku and the wooden seated figure of Bodhidharma are Important Cultural Properties.

On Saturdays, Sundays, and Public Holidays, volunteer guides are at the temple to assist you.
You can also meet Yukimaruzo!

Daruma-ji Temple is about a fifteen-minute walk from JR Oji Station along Yukimaru Road (Yukimaru is Oji's official mascot).
Daruma-ji Temple is known as the birthplace of the Bodhidharma ("Daruma") creed and gained attention when it became the site of the first annual "Bodhidharma fell" national championships in November 2021.
"Bodhidharma fell" is a children's game which is named so because people yell "Bodhidharma fell" while playing it.

*Prince Shotoku was an Imperial Family member and politician of the Asuka Period. He was responsible for numerous achievements under Japan's first female empress, Empress Suiko. He is a great historical figure known to all Japanese people and was once chosen to appear on the ten thousand yen bill.

*Bodhidharma Daishi was the monk who took the teachings of Zen from India to Japan and is therefore said to be the founder of Chinese Zen Buddhism.

All Japan Daruma-san ga Koronda Tournament

In 2021, the 1400th anniversary of Prince Shotoku's death, and in honor of The Prince's "Japanese Spirit" and the Daruma concept of "falling 7 times and getting up 8 times", and to help people suffering from the COVID epidemic to work together and stand strong once again the "All Japan Daruma ga Koronda Tournament" was held at Daruma-ji, where it is said the game was played for the first time, and it has been fiercely contested every November since then.

The competition is held between two teams of 5 people on the court at once.
The teams head for the goal while the demon calls out "Daruma ga Koronda".
There are no restrictions on the gender, age, or athleticism of participants.
All that is needed to compete is spirit and concentration!!

Facility information

Opening Hours
10:00 - 15:00
2-1-40 Hommachi, Oji-cho, Kitakatsuragi-gun, Nara
● Walking
Approx. 15 minutes from the Oji Station South Exit along Yukimaru Road

● Bus
Depart from Oji Station, bound for Myojin 1-chome or Hakuhodai 2-chome. Right next to the Harii bus stop

● Car
From the Kashiba IC, on the Nishi-Meihan Expressway, travel north on National Route 168 for approx. 10 minutes
Available (space for 30 cars, and 3 buses)