From September 11 to 13, Ryukoji Temple
in Katase Town is in the period of one of the most important ceremony
"Tatsunokuchi Honan-e" [龍口法難会]. Especially on the evening of
September 12 at the day, many ceremonies are held and precincts of the
temple is covered with full of great excitement.
The festival is based on the real historical story that Nichiren [日蓮] (a
Japanese Buddhist priest and founder of Nichiren-Shu sect.) survived thanks
to a miracle happened just before the execution here on the late evening
of September 12, 1271.
During the end of Kamakura era, crisis of war, invasion from foreign countries, plague and starvation occurred one after another in Japan. Nichiren was concerned about this situation and proposed the solution to the government of Kamakura Shogunate as a book.
But the government misunderstood this proposal as slanderous against them,
and detained Nichiren and brought him to the place to execute. Despite
the formal ruling from the government was not decided, execution was forced
on 2:00 am the following day.
At the very moment when the head of Nichiren tried to be cut off, a brilliant
object flying from the direction of Enoshima the sacred island and jumped
into the place. The executor who witnessed this incredible sight was not
able to execute by unusual fear and the execution was canceled.
Nichiren was released afterwards. He had been persecuted by the government
of Kamakura Shogunate 4 times, but this is the worst and last crisis.