Passing through the first gate, you will find “Sanmon” as an entrance of “Shichido Garan (traditional monastery complex)”. This gate was donated by Mr. Soun Kihara in memorial for his wife and it was constructed in 1969 as the largest gate made of reinforced concrete in Japan.
Two guardian deities (Kongō Rikishi) are arranged on both sides of the gate; 15 year-old former Yokozuna Kitanoumi (Sumo wrestler) served as a model for these sculptures.
On the top floor of this gate, statues of Kannon (Avaloskitesvara), Jizo (Ksitigarbha) Bodhisattova, 16 arahats (holy person) and the four heavenly kings are enshrined. They were sculptured by Mr. Seiki Abe. On 2nd and 16th of each month, a service for the arahats is practiced.
The calligraphy of [Shogakusan] in the center of this gate was written by the 19th Abbot of Sojiji, Rev. Shohun Iwamoto.