Senshin Buddhist Temple

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Senshin Buddhist Temple
RegionBuddhist Churches of America
LeadershipRev. Masao Kodani
LocationLos Angeles, United States
Geographic coordinates34°01′16″N 118°17′53″W / 34.0210782°N 118.2980304°W / 34.0210782; -118.2980304Coordinates: 34°01′16″N 118°17′53″W / 34.0210782°N 118.2980304°W / 34.0210782; -118.2980304

The Senshin Buddhist Temple (formerly called the Senshin Buddhist Church) is a Buddhist temple in Los Angeles, California. An affiliate of the Buddhist Churches of America (BCA), the temple was built in 1951. It is known for its maintenance of traditional practices and for cultivating one of the earliest taiko groups appearing in the United States under the leadership of Masao Kodani.[1]


The temple was built in 1951 in Los Angeles. Originally called the Senshin Buddhist Church, the institution, like many others, had named itself so due to members wanting to be represented as equal counterparts to members of Christian churches.[2] Its most recent leader, Masao Kodani, encouraged younger Japanese-Americans in the 1970s to explore their ethnic and religious roots through various event coordinated at the temple, such as its annual Obon festival.[3]

The church also fostered one of the earliest taiko groups to appear in the United States, Kinnara Taiko, which formed under the leadership of Masao Kodani between 1968 and 1969[4] immediately after the celebration of an Obon festival by members. Third-generation Japanese-American members of the church played taiko drum for four hours during the festival. Reportedly, their hands were bleeding afterwards, and collectively, they formed the group known as Kinnara Taiko.[1] Taiko continues to be a routine activity at the church, and some have suggested that it is effective at drawing in third- and fourth-generation Japanese-Americans into the Buddhist faith.[5]


  1. ^ a b Bronner, Simon J. (2005). Manly Traditions: The Folk Roots of American Masculinities. Indiana University: Indiana University Press. pp. 136, 144–145. ISBN 0253217814.
  2. ^ Gary Laderman & Luis D. León, ed. (2003). Religion and American Cultures: An Encyclopedia of Traditions, Diversity, and Popular Expressions, Volume 1. ABC-CLIO. p. 56. ISBN 157607238X.
  3. ^ Franklin Odo, ed. (2002). The Columbia Documentary History of the Asian American Experience. Columbia University: Columbia University Press. p. 432. ISBN 0231110308.
  4. ^ Tagashira, Gail (3 February 1989). "Local Groups Share Taiko Drum Heritage". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 12 April 2014.
  5. ^ Ellen Koskoff, ed. (2013). Music Cultures in the United States: An Introduction. Routledge. p. 280. ISBN 1135888817.