Learn more about Rev. Takafumi Kawakami & Shunkoin Temple

A Temple of Rich Cultural Properties from the 16th Century

Shunkoin Temple possesses many important artistic and cultural properties related to Zen Buddhism, and also has a deep connection with Shinto and Christianity.

Shunkoin Temple is located inside of Myoshinji Temple (the Myoshinji temple complex) and was established in 1590 by Horio Yoshiharu, a feudal load in the 16th century.

The temple houses the historic artifacts, like the screen paintings by Kano Eigaku and the Bell of Nanbanji Church, which is one of the oldest Christian bell in Japan.

In the early and mid-20th century, Shunkoin Temple became the important place for the modern Buddhism. Rev. Kozan Kawakami, who was the head priest, created the index for Tripitaka. His work has contributed to the archaeological researches of Buddhism. During that period, a Zen and Kyoto School philosopher, Shin-ichi Hisamatsu resided here and lead his tea practices. D.T. Suzuki was a frequent visitor of the temple and discussed Zen Buddhism with Dr. Hisamatsu.

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For access information, please see our Access page.

Rev. Takafumi Kawakami

The Rev. Takafumi Kawakami travels the world giving talks about the zen & mindfulness, and how these practices can help improve our lives in these modern and hectic times and help us be more creative and satisfied in our work.  His travels and talks have brought him to the likes of MIT, Brown University, TEDxKyoto & Ideo.

To learn more about him & his background, please see his list of accomplishments below.

Selected Invited Talks

  • Microsoft Research in Redmond, WA (Dec. 2018)
  • Lecturer, BNP Paribas Tokyo (Nov. 2018)
  • Lecturer, Zen and Mindfulness, Center for International Studies, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA (Feb. 2018)
  • Lecturer, Zen lecture and workshops, Contemplative Studies Initiative and Concentration, Brown University, Providence, RI (Feb. 2018)
  • Speaker, Zen, Mindfulness, and Matcha with WiL at IDEO in San Francisco (June 2016)
  • Lecturer, Toyota Global Hospitality Program (May 2012-present)
  • Panelist, Industry Co-Creation Conference Fukuoka (Feb. 2017)
  • Contemplative faculty, International Symposium of Contemplative Studies, hosted by the Mind &Life Institute in San Diego (Nov. 2016)
  • Speaker, Foreign Executive Women Kansai, Osaka (Oct. 2016)
  • Panelist, Industry Co-Creation Conference, Kyoto (Jul. 2016)
  • Lecturer, mindfulness workshop with the Campus for H at Asahikasei Co. (Mar. 2016)
  • Presenter, Infinity Ventures Summit (Dec. 2014, Dec. 2015, Dec. 2016)
  • Presenter, TEDx Kyoto (Nov. 2015)
  • Presenter, Connect Café Forum at General Electric Japan (Sep. 2015)
  • Lecturer, mindfulness workshop with Campus for H at the Recruit Holdings Media Technology Lab (Jan. and Jun. 2015)
  • Lecturer, mindfulness workshop with Campus for H at the DeNA Co. Ltd (Jan. 2015)
  • Presenter, Young Presidents’ Organization Pan Asia Chapter Tokyo/Hakone 2014 (Apr. 2014)
  • Presenter, BAE Systems corporate meeting (Dec. 2013)
  • Panelist, Tourism Study Seminar in Kyoto, hosted by the Japan Travel and Tourism Association (Sep. 2013)
  • Opening Speaker, International Luxury Travel Market, Kyoto (Mar. 2013)
  • Speaker, Japanese Ground Self-Defense Force, Fukuchiyama Base (Feb. 2012)
  • Presenter, Kyoto City Tourism Event at Four Seasons Hotel, Tokyo (Feb. 2012)
  • Speaker, Hiroshima International Women’s Club (May 2011)

Professional Activities

  • Researcher, Keio University, Keio Media Design (2017- present)
  • Completed SIY Engaged Program, Search Inside Yourself (May – Oct. 2016)
  • Member, U.S. – Japan Leadership Program, U.S.-Japan Foundation (Jul. 2008-present)
  •  Project team member, MYALO by Campus for H, mindfulness smart phone application (Jul. 2014)
  • Project team member, JINS MEME ZEN by JINS, smart phone application for the eyewear-style device (Apr. 2015)
  • Researcher, Doshisha University Well-being Research Center (2016-present)

Selected Teaching Activities

  • Lecturer, Zen and mindfulness workshop at Antioch University, Los Angeles (Aug. 2013, Aug. 2014, Aug. 2015, Aug. 2016)
  • Lecturer, Zen and Mindfulness, Harvard Business School, MIT, University of Chicago, University of Pennsylvania, University of California Berkeley, Washington University, Emory University, IESE at Shunkoin Temple
  • Lecturer, LGBTQ and religion, Graduate School of Education, University of Tokyo (Jan. 2015)
  • Panelist, International Student Forum, hosted by Ritsumeikan Uji High School (Feb. 2012 and Feb. 2013)
  • Speaker, Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies (Jul. 2012)


  • Sekaijyu no toppu erito ga tsudou zen no kyoshits, 世界中のトップエリートが集 う禅の教室, Tokyo, Kadokawa Shoten (2016)


For recent updates on Shunkoin and Rev. Taka Kawakami, please see our updates page.


Here are links to some things you might find handy during your visit.