This portrait hall is one of the most sacred locations in Kōyasan and was originally the building that Kōbō Daishi (Kūkai) used for meditation.
The hall is lined with images of the ten disciples of Kōbō Daishi and contains a ninth century portrait of Kūkai painted during his lifetime by his disciple, the monk Shinnyo, a former imperial prince. This portrait is one of the greatest treasures of Kōyasan, and is not displayed to the public. The original building was lost to fire three times and each time the portrait was rescued. The Miedro was last rebuilt in 1848 and survived the Kondo fire of 1926.
A portion of the interior can be seen by the public one a year, on the night before the anniversary of Kōbō Daishi entering into eternal meditation. On this day, the 20th of the third month of the lunar calendar, the temple is filled with flowers and candles donated by worshippers. At 18:30 songs and dance are offered near the Miedo and at 20:00 a Buddhist service begins. After the service, the public may enter parts of the portrait hall.
The following day, on the the 21st of March according to the lunar calendar, a Buddhist service is held at the Miedo at 13:00. Tea ceremonies and exhibitions of flower arrangements also take place here.
Those wishing to enter the Miedo during on the eve of the anniversary should collect a ticket from the tent next to the building.
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- UNESCO World Heritage Koyasan Leaflet in English
- Koyasan Reihokan Museum Leaflet in English
- Dai Garan Kongobuki Koyasan leaflet
- Kongobuji Temple Leaflet
- Guide to Koyasan
- Kōyasan – the 1200th Anniversary Since The Foundation