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Shakaden
 

Shakaden was completed on November 9, 1975 at the site where the former Reiyukai headquarters' hall was located. The founder Kakutaro Kubo built the original complex in December 1937 at Azabu-Iigura, Tokyo as the center in proliferating Reiyukai's teachings.


Kubo once told Kimi Kotani that the significance of this establishment was to "serve as the foundation of Reiyukai from which a great deal of people will set out to work for world peace". Kotani took to Kubo's will and instituted the construction of the Shakaden.




 

  

  
  


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Today, the Shakaden serves as a meeting hall and social centre for Reiyukai members and the local community. It is a special building where people can come and share the philosophies of Reiyukai.

In addition to the main meeting hall, the Shakaden complex contains one smaller meeting hall, nine conference rooms, a cafeteria, a book shop, a nursery, and a medical centre. These facilities are used for activities ranging from study groups to calligraphy classes.

The Main Hall of the Shakaden is the largest meeting hall of Reiyukai, a hall where each of the major branches hold their yearly gatherings.

In addition, the main hall is open every day, as a quiet place where members can come during spare moments in their daily schedule. At the front of the hall is a wide stage with a raised platform on which flowers, fruit and rice cakes are offered in celebration of like and in consideration of our ancestors. In the cabinet behind this there are five scrolls and over one hundred registers of the names of deceased Reiyukai members who have contributed to the development of the organization and non-members who have made a substantial contribution to society during their lives.



Shakaden Hall

Above and behind the stage stands an eight metre high statue of Shakyamuni Buddha. Master sculptor Seiko Sawada spent six years creating the figure, carving it in one piece from a single log of thousand-year-old camphor wood. The figure of Shakyamuni stands in a separate structure within the walls of the Shakaden, supported by three pillars extending to the bedrock below. The statue is usually enclosed in a temperature and humidity controlled chamber which preserves the camphor wood. During gatherings in the main hall, the doors of the chamber are opened, revealing the figure of Shakyamuni. Gatherings are usually held on the 9th and 18th of each month, these two days commemorating the passing of Reiyukai's two founders, whose statues stand at each side of the stage.

Above and behind the stage stands an eight metre high statue of Shakyamuni Buddha. Master sculptor Seiko Sawada spent six years creating the figure, carving it in one piece from a single log of thousand-year-old camphor wood.

The figure of Shakyamuni stands in a separate structure within the walls of the Shakaden, supported by three pillars extending to the bedrock below. The statue is usually enclosed in a temperature and humidity controlled chamber which preserves the camphor wood. During gatherings in the main hall, the doors of the chamber are opened, revealing the figure of Shakyamuni. Gatherings are usually held on the 9th and 18th of each month, these two days commemorating the passing of Reiyukai's two founders, whose statues stand at each side of the stage.

Directly below the Main Hall is an open space where people can relax, enjoy each other's company, or participate in the entertainment occasionally provided by festivals or concerts. This space, called the Plaza, can accommodate over 1,000 people and is used by both Reiyukai and the people living in the neighborhood around the Shakaden.

The Shakaden Plaza can also be used by those in the neighborhood as a place of refuge in the event of an earthquake or other natural disaster. Beneath is an underground water tank containing 400 tons of emergency drinking water, water that is also available to the Tokyo fire department for use in fighting fires in the neighbourhood of the Shakaden

 


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