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06/19/2018

About a powerful monk interfered in politics in the 8th century

After the Komyo retired-Empress passed away, Oshikatsu Emi was isolated and his political influence was decreased in the Court.
 
The Koken-abdicated Emperor loved a monk who took care of the abdicated Emperor when she was sick. Unfortunately, the monk had political ambitions and used the Koken-abdicated Emperor for his own purpose, encouraging her to defy the Junnin Emperor.
 
Since Oshikatsu Emi was afraid of losing his authority, he raised a rebellion against the Koken-abdicated Emperor in 764, but he was destroyed by the forces of the abdicated Emperor.
 
After that, the Junnin Emperor was forced to retire and was sent to Awaji-island. The Koken-abdicated Emperor came back to the throne of the Emperor and became the Syotoku Emperor during her second reign.
 
Since the monk, Dokyo, received strong support from the Syotoku Emperor, he became the Grand Minister and then rose to the top of the Buddhist hierarchy.
 
In 769, a conspiracy related to Dokyo occurred. A priest of Usa Hachiman Shinto shrine reported to the Syotoku Emperor that the Usa Hachiman god said Dokyo should ascend to the throne. Usa Hachimangu was one of the most important Shinto shrines in those days. To confirm the god's message, the Syotoku Emperor sent a servant to the Shrine. The servant, Kiyomaru Wake listened to the god's message himself and reported to the Emperor that the god was opposed to Dokyo's ascending the throne. Therefore, the conspiracy failed.
 
After the Syotoku Emperor passed away, Dokyo lost his political power and the Konin-Emperor succeeded to the throne. In those days, many of the Tenmu Emperor's direct descendants succeeded the throne, but the Konin-Emperor was a grandson of the Tenji Emperor, who was an older brother of the Tenmu Emperor.
 
The Konin Emperor was strongly supported by Momokawa Fujiwara. The Emperor aimed for the reconstruction of national politics and finance.

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