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‘Goma’ Prayer (Fire Ceremony)

‘Goma’ Prayer (Fire Ceremony)

Buddhists belief that we must subjugate and ultimately rid ourselves of worldly desires in order to see the true nature of existence.  In order to guide and support us in that goal, qualified monks perform ‘Goma’ Prayer or ‘Fire Ceremony’ in which wooden prayer sticks are burned in a consecrated flame in an act that is believed to be spiritually and psychologically cleansing for participants.

Zenko-ji temple in Nagano city

Conducted within the peaceful and reflective Daikanjin compound of Zenko-ji Temple, participants in ‘goma’ prayer will be led and instructed by a resident monk. The burning of prayers in the sacred flame imbues the experience with a deep spirituality and is often found to rid participants of their immediate, worldly concerns. Whether you are a practicing Buddhist or seeking a memorable and meaningful experience while in Japan, ‘goma’ prayer will leave a deep and lasting impression on  you.

Other Nagano City & Togakushi Pages







09:30 - 16:30



From Nagano Station: Exit the station from the Zenko-ji Exit and take the bus heading for Zenko-ji Temple. Get off at the Zenko-ji bus stop and walk uphill to the temple complex. Alternatively, exit the station via the Zenko-ji Exit and follow the signs up the hill to the temple (approx. 20 minute walk).

Reservation required by phone or email

Once at the temple entrance, head up the hill toward the main temple. You will pass under the Niomon (the first gate with two fierce gods) and continue on toward the Sanmon (the second gate). Shortly prior to the temple's water/cleansing station on your right, you will see the Daikanjin (Tendai Sect compound) on your left. The compound is accessible over a distinctive red-arched bridge therefore it is easy to spot. Once over the bridge and inside the compound you need to go to your left and someone will assist you.