Born: Unknown 
Died: Unknown 
Titles: Founder of the Order of the Five Rings,
Imperial Advisor

Gorinno was a famous Four Temples monk in the 6th century. [1]

Early Years Edit

Gorinno was left behind by his own parents as they fled an approaching army. A wandering monk came and took him under his care, and the young boy grew up in a monastery. [2]

Famous Monk Edit

Gorinno became a charismatic monk who had a deep understanding of the Tao of Shinsei. He became quite prominent in the years following the First Rise of Iuchiban, traveling around the Empire helping the people of Rokugan to accept the new customs as cremation of the dead instead to bury them. [3]

Imperial Funeral Edit

In the year 514 the Emperor Hantei XI died. Hantei XII decreed his father's funeral would establish the standard funeral rites for all of the Empire, as the proper rites had not been defined yet. The new Emperor tasked the Jade Champion, Seppun Matashi, with deciding on the most honorable and pious ritual. Undermined by the Elemental Masters, Matashi found refusal for all the rituals he proposed for the Imperial funeral. Eventually Gorinno convinced everyone to accept his ideas, and he was credited for the successful funeral, greatly impressing the Emperor. [1]

Heresy of the Five Rings Edit

Beliefs Edit

In the year 519 Gorinno suggested there was a spiritual malaise in the Empire, and he proposed a cure for the imbalance he perceived. In the city of Nikesake Gorinno claimed the Crab Clan to be a Clan of Earth, the Crane and Scorpion a Clan of Air, the Dragon a Clan of Fire, the Lion a Clan of Water, and the Phoenix a Clan of Void. One of the two Clans of air had to merge in one single clan in order the restore Celestial Balance, as the Ki-Rin Clan, a Clan of Water, had already left the Empire to avoid this unbalance before. Some of those who heard of it considered heretical his arguments. [4]

Five Rings, five clans. Otherwise, balance will never be attained, and our misfortunes will only grow worse. [5]

First Followers Edit

Emerald Magistrates arrested the monk for heresy, but the Emperor himself intervened and Gorinno was immediately released. A series of peasant revolts followed, and soon the Brotherhood of Shinsei itself was plagued by acts of violence between its various sects. The prominent shugenja Isawa Amiku embraced the teachings Gorinno proposed and with the Kuni Daimyo Kuni Watabe created a religious movement which would be known as the Heresy of the Five Rings. [6]

Lion Support Edit

In the year 521 the Kitsu Daimyo Kitsu Eiji contacted Gorinno and they soon became friends. Two years later Gorinno presided the funeral of the revered hero Akodo Samune, and the Lion Clan Champion Akodo Kento patroned the construction of a monastery dedicated to the study of Gorinno's teachings, thus effectively founding the Order of the Five Rings. [7]

Open Violence Edit

In the year 526, upon request of Kuni Watabe, Gorinno led his monk and peasant followers to help break the Siege of Shiro Kuni, but at a heavy cost. Despite their support, the Order of the Five Rings was expelled from Crab lands the next year. Monks of his order condemned the Fortunist monasteries as misguided and selfish, and soon open violence erupted between Shintaoist and Fortunist sects through the Empire. Dragon samurai were sent to act as peacekeepers between the rival factions. [8]

Imperial Advisor Edit

In the year 532 the Emperor Hantei XII died, and his son Hantei Satoru became Hantei XIII. An admirer of Gorinno and his teachings the new Emperor appointed the monk as his Imperial Advisor. Major members of both Scorpion and Crane Clans were forced to marry, paving the way for an intended full merging in one Great Clan. The next year he used his station to silence any complaints in the open attacks of Five Ring monks over Fortunist monks. [9]

The Hawk Clan Edit

After the death of Bayushi Tsuya in 533, his daughter Bayushi Megumi became the new Scorpion Clan Champion. Since the Crane Clan Champion, Doji Iwata, was widowed, Gorinno decided to merge both clans completely by wedding their Clan Champions. The Emperor granted Megumi to wait three years before the wedding, the traditional mourning period for one's parent. At the end of Winter Court the Emperor proclaimed the merged Crane/Scorpion “Clan of Air” would be known as the Hawk Clan. In the next winter court, Scorpion, Phoenix, and Crane courtiers all staged a series of relentless political attacks on Gorinno without success. At the end of winter a wave of kanshi sweeped through the ranks of both clans. [10]

Fall from Power Edit

The Brotherhood of Shinsei held a Great Convocation to determine whether Gorinno's belief was heretical. [11] In 535, with only a week left before the wedding, a delegation from the Brotherhood of Shinsei named Gorinno's teachings a False Path, the Heresy of the Five Rings. Confronted, the Imperial Advisor lose his on in front of the Imperial Court, threatening his followers would destroy his enemies' temples. The Emperor turned his back and Gorinno was banished from Otosan Uchi. The Order of the Five Rings was sanctioned as heretical and disbanded. [12]

See also Edit

Preceded by:
Imperial Advisor
532 - 535
Succeeded by:


  1. 1.0 1.1 Imperial Histories 2, p. 85
  2. Imperial Histories 2, p. 96
  3. Imperial Histories 2, p. 84
  4. Imperial Histories 2, p. 83-85
  5. Imperial Histories 2, p. 83
  6. Imperial Histories 2, pp. 84-85
  7. Imperial Histories 2, pp. 85-86
  8. Imperial Histories 2, p. 86
  9. Imperial Histories 2, p. 87
  10. Imperial Histories 2, pp. 87-88
  11. Secrets of the Empire, p. 161
  12. Imperial Histories 2, p. 89

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