We all wish for a world of peace and contentment. Accomplishing this is no easy task, but we can always rely on the hope that comes from within. When we put our hopes into action, those efforts will spread out into the world to create a better future.”

Her Holiness Shinso Ito


Her Holiness Shinso Ito

Her Holiness Shinso Ito

Today Shinnyo-en is led by Her Holiness Shinso Ito, Shinjo's direct successor. Shinso was born in Japan in 1942, the daughter of Shinjo and Tomoji. She began her formal Buddhist training as a child under the care of her parents, who were also her primary spiritual teachers, and eventually became their formal and spiritual successor. She was ordained in the Shinnyo tradition in 1966 and undertook her initial priestly training between 1970 and 1982. In 1984, Shinjo announced Shinso's accomplishment as his disciple and future successor. She is one of the few women to become a Buddhist master and attain the highest priestly rank of daisojo. Shinso has twice conducted important services at Daigoji, the 9th-century Shingon monastery in Kyoto where Shinjo trained as a priest.

Her Holiness Shinso Ito

While Shinso draws inspiration from Buddhist tradition, she is profoundly aware that the teachings must be meaningful for people living today. She teaches an engaged form of Buddhism, that guides both the individual and Shinnyo-en as a whole. Shinso preserves the spirit of the founders of Shinnyo-en and guides people with her warmth and conviction. Her inspiring message of peace and enlightenment is infused with palpable joy and gentleness.

In recent years, Her Holiness has conducted ceremonies dedicated to peace and harmony between cultures and religions. She has also partnered with secular philanthropic foundations throughout the world, acting on her belief that all life is interconnected, and that Buddhism should actively engage in serving the global community. Shinso is also committed to assisting with disaster relief, humanitarian and medical aid, social welfare, women's empowerment, environmental protection, educational aid, the preservation of traditional culture, and the promotion of innovative artistic and cultural programs.

Address by Her Holiness Shinso Ito at the Fire and Water Ceremony in Taipei, April 6, 2014

Address by Her Holiness Shinso Ito at the 14th Annual Lantern Floating Hawai'i Ceremony

Address by Her Holiness Shinso Ito at the Global Peace Initiative of Women conference, United Nations Environmental Program Headquarters, Nairobi, Kenya

Her Holiness' remarks on the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks on the United States

Read Her Holiness' speech from Saisho Homa 2010

Read Her Holiness' speech from the Women's Conference 2010