Near the Aizen-en is a hamlet called Anao. It is where Onisaburo was born and raised. The remains of his home are currently a sanctuary named Zuisenkyo (Home of the Spirit of Mizu). There you will find things associated with the young Onisaburo in the Meiji period (1868-1912), such as the well used to bathe the newborn Kisaburo (Onisaburo's original name), the pond he fought over with the landlords, and the poem monument he erected--to name just a few.

Anao is also known for Anaoji Temple and Obata Shrine. Kisaburo went to elementary school within Anaoji Temple, and a quirk of fate later made him a substitute teacher at the age of 12! Obata Shrine is the abode of the tutelary deity protecting Kisaburo's community. He often visited the shrine and received divine revelations.

For Onisaburo, Anao is a place filled with his nostalgic memories. It will be fun to read his biography, especially Mother Earth and take a stroll around the area.

Map of Anao (in Japanese)
• Click on the image to enlarge

Bird's-eye view of Anao (in Japanese)
• Click on the image to enlarge

About a mile west of the residential quarter is Mount Takakuma. It is also called Mount Chozuka. During his initiatory experience on this sacred mountain, Onisaburo was led to the spirit world and awakened to the Way of the Kami.

We suggest that you visit Mount Takakuma, a spiritual spot of divine sanctity.

Onisaburo at Tamanoi Well
within Zuisenkyo               


An important sanctuary of the Aizen-en. Formerly the home of Onisaburo (Spirit of Mizu)

 Ueda dairy

A dairy farm Kisaburo set up with the expertise he gained at his cousin's in Sonobe, 12 miles west of Kameoka. Eventually, he made the Ueda dairy a successful enterprise.

 Obata Shrine

Onisaburo's tutelary shrine dedicated to the Ninth Emperor Kaika. It houses a rare painting of a horse by the famous painter Okyo Maruyama (1733-1795; real name Mondo Ueda), also an ancestor of Onisaburo seven generations back. More importantly, this is where Kisaburo received the Three Verities from the kami Kototama-hiko.

 Mount Takakuma

On lunar February 9, 1898, while physically present in the cave on this holy mountain, Onisaburo the soul journeyed into the varying realms of the spirits and divinities, practicing week-long asceticism according to a divine command.
At that time he became aware of his mission to save humankind. He later wrote an account of this experience in the Reikai Monogatari.


A small shed in front of Go Shrine that Kisaburo used as a meeting place for his gang.
This is where Kisaburo learned from his mother Yone and his grandmother Uno that his real father was Prince Taruhito Arisugawa. A while after this dramatic revelation, the messenger Matsuoka of the kami Konohana-hime appeared and took Kisaburo to Mount Fuji.

Incidentally, the term Kiraku comes from the pseudonym Ankambo Kiraku (an idle and carefree man) that Kisaburo adopted when composing kanku (a kind of haiku) poems.

 Anaoji Temple

Kisaburo had schooling in the precincts of this Buddhist temple. In his youth he founded a kanku club and used this temple for its regular workshops. Moreover, during a memorial service held at the Hall of Kannon, Kisaburo met Ben Yagi, a girl he fell in love with.

 Kongoji Temple

Also called Okyoji, this temple is where Okyo Maruyama, a leading painter in the Edo period (1603-1867) entered Buddhism. In the evenings, Kisaburo would often learn the Chinese classics and other subjects from the Buddhist priest.

 Go Shrine

A Shinto shrine dedicated to both kami Amaterasu and Toyouke-hime. It appears that the devout Kisaburo also visited this shrine besides Obata Shrine.

 Remains of the Residence of Ran Saito

Ran Saito is the first girl Onisaburo fell in love with. She was a daughter of a landlord, while Kisaburo was a son of a peasant farming family. Due to this class difference, things didn't work out for them.

 Mount Tono

A small mountain at the back of Obata Shrine.

 Inukai River

Also called the Obata River. According to Mother Earth, Kisaburo would clean his cattle along this river when running the Ueda dairy.

We look forward to your visit to Anao!


    Copyright ©  The Aizen-en   All Rights Reserved.