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Was Dokyo a bad person?

There are ruins of an ancient temple called Shimotsuke Yakushiji in Tochigi Prefecture. After the death of Empress Koken (came back to the throne as Empress Shotoku), Dokyo was demoted to the post of chief of the Yakushiji Temple and died here.

After Emperor Tenmu, the imperial throne was inherited through the Tenmu line, but Emperor Shomu was not blessed with a male successor and his daughter, Empress Koken, ascended the throne. Since our country does not recognize female emperors, her mission was to choose a suitable male successor from the imperial family through her celibacy. She was a descendant of Prince Kusakabe, the favorite thoroughbred (her parents were Emperors Tenmu and Jito), but there were no candidates in her lineage, and she was recommended by Nakamaro Fujiwara, and was a descendant of Prince Toneri's son, Prince Otani (Emperor Junnin). A series of political situations revolve around the Tenchi lineage and Tenmu lineage, the power struggle among the Fujiwara clan, and Emperor Koken's favoritism (Nakamaro and Dokyo). As a result, Dokyo fell from grace after the Nakamaro Rebellion (764), the Usa Hachiman Shrine Oracle Incident (769), and the death of Emperor Koken (Shotoku) (770).

Dokyo is said to be one of Japan's three villains (Masakado Taira, Takauji Ashikaga), and I think the reason is that they were all involved in the usurpation of the imperial throne or were deeply involved in it, although Masakado and Takauji are quite popular. Dokyo has a dark image, perhaps because of his bad reputation for seducing the empress.

The story of Emperor Koken, Nakamaro, and Dokyo overlaps with the story of Qin Shihuang's mother and Lu Buwei and Rou Ai. The difference is that while Nakamaro and Dokyo were enemies, Ryofuwei arranged a relationship with them, and Ryofuwei did not aim for the imperial throne.

Dokyo was a sensible old monk in his 70s who came from the middle-class aristocratic Yuge clan, and reached the pinnacle of his career. He was surrounded by successive famous families from the founding of the Yamato court, as well as the rapidly rising Fujiwara clan. I find it hard to believe that he seriously thought he could inherit the throne just by being favored.

In his later years, I guess he was perplexed by the empress who was trying to hand over the throne to him, so he consulted the appropriate people. Usurping the imperial throne is supposed to be a serious crime, but after Emperor Koken's death, his family was exiled and he himself went to Shimotsuke, but Shimotsuke Yakushiji is a very prestigious temple.

During the Nara period, it was one of Japan's three Buddhist precepts (the others being Todai-ji Temple and Kanzeonji Temple in Dazaifu) and was the only place in eastern Japan where monks' licenses could be handed over. It seems that Dokyo died after spending two years there, and although he was already quite old, it is thought that he lived out his natural life while maintaining a certain level of honor as a famous monk.

Currently, the ruins of the great temple of Shimotsuke Yakushi-ji Temple lie next to its successor, Ankoku-ji Temple (recently renamed Yakushi-ji Temple), and it seems that the grandeur of the temple is being revealed through excavations.

On a side note, both Dokyo and Takaai became famous for their big dicks. In the senryu of the Edo period, there is a saying that ``Dokyo has three knees when he sits down.'' Am I the only one who thinks it's time to restore his reputation?



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