About Jisha

Jisha (侍者), along with the titles inji and sannō, are Japanese terms used in reference to the personal attendant of a monastery's abbot or teacher in Zen Buddhism. In the Rinzai school, the term is usually either inji or sannō. According to the book 3 Bowls: Vegetarian Recipes from an American Zen Buddhist Monastery, "While the jikijitsu is the stern father of the zendo, the jisha is the den mother, balancing the strictness that his counterpoint establishes. The jisha prepares for and greets all guests, tends to the needs of the students, takes care of the sick, and organizes the cleaning of the monastery." According to author Victor Sōgen Hori, "In the Northern Sung period, a master of a large monastery had two attendants, but by the Yüan period the number of attendants had increased to five: an incense attendant, a secretary attendant, a guest attendant, a robe attendant, and a 'hot water and medicine' attendant who cooked for him."
Memorial Portrait of Utagawa Hiroshige

Honorific Japanese Buddhist titles

Buddhism has been practiced in Japan since about the 6th century CE. Japanese Buddhism created many new Buddhist schools, and some schools are original to Japan and some are derived from Chinese Buddhist schools. There were a broad range of reform strategies and movements which aimed at positioning Buddhism as a useful partner to a modernizing Japan. This included clerical reform to tighten discipline as well as reforms concerning doctrine and practice. Some Buddhists .