Shounen-ji Temple, which retains many facets of history, is situated in the center of the refined and charming Imai-cho area in Nara.
Imai-cho, an Important Preservation District of Historic Buildings, is a temple compound town that grew within the grounds of the Shounen-ji Temple. During the Tenmon period (1523-1553) at the end of the Muromachi era, around the time the historical figure Oda Nobunaga was born, Imai Hyoubu Toyohisa and Tsuruhisa built a doujo training hall for Honganji Temple in the Imai district. This is said to be the roots of Shounen-ji Temple.
Various historical figures have lodged at Shounen-ji Temple. Around the middle of the Tenmon and Tenshou periods (1573-1592): the holy priest Shounyo Shounin of Honganji Temple; Jitsujuh, the youngest son of the holy priest Ren’nyo Shounin; and other high priests such as Ken’nyo Shounin. Also, in the 10th year of Meiji, Emperor Meiji lodged there. It is said that Emperor Meiji learned of the Satsuma Rebellion during this stay at Shounen-ji Temple.
Thus, as you can see, Shounen-ji Temple is an important relic temple of the Joudo Shinshu sect, which has played an important role in history.
Shounen-ji Temple, a Nationally Designated Important Cultural Property, is presently undergoing conservation repairs, aiming for the main temple to be completed in March of 2018 (the 30th year of Heisei).