Encho (円澄)

Encho (772-837) was a Tendai Sect Buddhist monk who lived during the first part of the Heian period. He was born into the Mibu clan. He came from Saitama County in Musashi Province.

It was under Dochu of the Kanto region that he first entered the Buddhist priesthood and took the name Hokyo but went on to study under Saicho of Mt. Hiei in the year 798 and change his name to Encho. In the year 806, he received the Endonkai (Precepts for Perfect and Immediate Enlightenment) from Saicho and his aptitude led to him being given the opportunity to recite the second volume of the Lotus Sutra following Saicho at a Hokke Choko (long recitation of the Lotus Sutra) in the year 807. Encho was appointed as the second Tendai Zasu (head priest of the Tendai Sect) in the year 833 before establishing Saito-in Temple and Jakko-in Temple on Mt. Hiei. He also recommended that Empress Dowager Tachibana no Kachiko make an offering of several hundred Buddhist surplices to Guoqing Temple on China's Mt. Tiantai.