Portrait of Ryuzen
I met Ryuzen at the Koyasan Buddhist Temple, located in Little Tokyo, Downtown Los Angeles, California, USA. Ryuzen arrived at the Temple in 2012. He noted that the founder of his Temple came to Los Angeles with a group of immigrants in 1912.
Ryuzen grew up on Kyushu Island, Japan in a town near the main city of Fukuoka. Next, he went to Kyoto for university, and after graduating, Ryuzen went to priest school at the headquarters of Shingon-shu Buddhism, a denomination founded by Kukai, at Koyasan, a small mountain town located in northern Wakayama Prefecture.
In Koyasan, many temples stood and one of the temples was where Ryuzen practiced and studied for a year to be a priest. After graduating, headquarters granted Ryuzen the right to be a priest and represent his nomination anywhere, worldwide.
Ryuzen did not come to the United States until after he first graduated from Doshisha University, in Kyoto and then from priest school at Koyasan. A priest in the United States had introduced Ryuzen to the Koyasan Buddhist Temple in Los Angeles. Not only did he find it a suitable place to stay and practice, but he knew this was an excellent place to improve his English.
Image Credits: Bat-Ami Gordin © 2017 all rights reserved. Credit if you use it, please.