Myouren Temple | Palanquin Ship
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The Myouren Temple (
The Palanquin Ship was created by Byakuren Hijiri and given to Minamitsu Murasa in order to win over her trust. The design itself is based on the ship that Minamitsu died on. It was eventually buried into the Underworld after Byakuren was sealed away by humans, but popped up on the surface of Gensokyo during the events of Subterranean Animism. It was temporarily used as a simple granary, but was later renovated into a temple which was named after Byakuren's brother, Myouren Hijiri.
The temple was purposely landed bang above the Hall of Dreams' Great Mausoleum so that Byakuren could keep an eye on the seal on Toyosatomimi no Miko; as a saint of humans, it's clear the two would naturally be at odds. Ironically, this choice ended up being exactly why the seal was broken in the first place. After the intervention of the main character in the events of Ten Desires, the now-revived "residents" of the Mausoleum appear to have been pacified for the moment.
The youkai at the temple
There are many youkai at the temple training as monks under Byakuren in Buddhism. However, they are still inexperienced and undisciplined, as displayed during Ten Desires. She seems to have her hands full with them, as many of the youkai can also be seen at parties, eating meat and drinking alcohol, both of which are prohibited in the Buddhist faith. Many notable youkai live or come here, such as Byakuren Hijiri (the Buddhist monk), Shou Toramaru, Nazrin, Ichirin Kumoi & Unzan (Both are guards), Minamitsu Murasa (the captain of the ship), Nue Houjuu, Kyouko Kasodani, Mamizou Futatsuiwa and Koishi Komeiji. Kogasa Tatara also lives in the cemetery.
Byakuren has apparently turned away certain youkai from entering the temple, with the reason that those specific youkai would never be able to overcome being a natural enemy of humans. Two of the youkai in particular were Yamame Kurodani and Rin Kaenbyou. She also explains that the Underworld youkai in particular, who are living in what is essentially a society without rules, would be unfit for training under the Buddhist faith.
The inspiration for the Palanquin Ship is the flying warehouse (飛倉 Tobi Kura), which appears in the first volume of Shigi san Engi Emaki. The story goes that Myouren made a bowl fly, so it was called the Flying Bowl (飛鉢 Hihatsu), for people to place offerings into. When a certain rich man suspected that Myouren might be skimming off the top, he shut the bowl into a closed storage room. In return, Myouren made the whole storage room fly, along with the bowl and the other stored supplies like bales of rice. The rich man asked Myouren to give back the supplies so he did. After a long time, perhaps after long time passed since Myouren died, the Flying Storage fell into ruin, but it gained sacred power from his cloth which his sister gave to him. People wondered about it, so they removed pieces of it from the Storage. The ship may also have some reference to the secret Treasure Ship found in Super Mario Bros. 3.
The Palanquin Ship's name in Japanese is pronounced "Seirensen", identical to the Japanese title of Undefined Fantastic Object. The kanji on the sail is "寶", an archaic version of "宝" meaning "treasure".
The Temple's Appearances
- Undefined Fantastic Object
The Palanquin Ship first appeared in its ship form on Stage 3 of Undefined Fantastic Object. It was flying over the skies of Gensokyo, and thus made the heroine believe that it was some sort of treasure ship. So they've set off to investigate. They'll fly over the outside of this ship, when simultaneously fighting fairies, flying yin-yangs and collecting Seed of Unknown Form without realising. Ichirin Kumoi and Unzan appear as the midboss and boss of the stage. They'll inform the heroine that there's no treasure and realise that they've been collecting fragments. Eventually, they'll defeat Ichirin, and they'll enter the ship for Stage 4. They expect to find treasure, but the ship is empty, as it had been lying underground for over a thousand years. Minamitsu Murasa will either try to kick the heroine out of the ship or keep them in for the needed fragments, but either way she is defeated. Regardless, the ship is piloted with the heroine into Makai after Stage 4. After the events of Undefined Fantastic Object, the ship returns to Gensokyo and lands near the Human Village. Suwako Moriya & Kanako Yasaka helped build the shrine, as Sanae had offered the Moriya Shrine's help in exchange for passage back out of Makai (Sanae couldn't escape on her own).
- Ten Desires
The temple serves as the setting of Stage 2, 3 and the Extra Stage of Ten Desires. The heroines approach the temple in search of answers on Stage 2 as to the recent outbreak of divine spirits, fighting various fairies and flying yin-yangs, where they'll be confronted by the new monk-in-training Kyouko Kasodani, who attempts to drive them away. She is the midboss and boss of the stage, but is defeated. Stage 3 reveals a graveyard adjacent to the temple, where the heroine will additionally fight divine spirits. Kogasa Tatara, the midboss, will jump out for help because of an unusual youkai, but was defeated. After, Yoshika Miyako, the boss of the stage, is guarding the entrance to the Hall of Dreams' Great Mausoleum, but was defeated.
- Double Spoiler
The temple (in its ship form) appears in Double Spoiler on stage 5, where Aya Shameimaru and Hatate Himekaidou encounters Minamitsu Murasa, Ichirin Kumoi and Kisume to try and take photos of their danmaku. The previous stage is at the Untrodden Valley at the Youkai Mountain, whilst the next stage is at the Former Capital in Former Hell, Underworld. There are 8 scenes total on this stage.
- Hopeless Masquerade
- Impossible Spell Card
The road that leads to the temple appears on the second day of Impossible Spell Card, where Seija Kijin carries on defending herself from other youkai who are trying to capture her. She'll fight against both Kyouko Kasodani and Sekibanki as they try to capture her with their "impossible" spell cards. There are 6 scenes total in the day. The previous day was at the Misty Lake, whilst the next day is located at the Bamboo Forest of the Lost.
- Urban Legend in Limbo
The Palanquin Ship on stage 3 of Undefined Fantastic Object
The Palanquin Ship on stage 4 of Undefined Fantastic Object
The road to the Myouren Temple in Ten Desires
The Myouren Temple Cemetery in Ten Desires
The road in the Extra Stage of Ten Desires
The road to the Myouren Temple in Impossible Spell Card
The Palanquin Ship at night in Urban Legend in Limbo
The Myouren Temple at afternoon in Urban Legend in Limbo
Myouren Temple road in Oriental Sacred Place
Myouren Temple in Oriental Sacred Place
Myouren Temple bell in Oriental Sacred Place
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- 2009/08/15 Undefined Fantastic Object - story and endings
- 2011/11/25 Ten Desires special and two-part interview with ZUN
- Undefined Fantastic Object: Sanae's ending