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Otani Kocho was born on October 1, 1903 Kyoto, Japan.
Otani was Chief Abbot of the Higashi Honganji Temple, one of the head temples of the Shinshii Sect (Otani School). He was revered by believers of the sect as the living symbol of their faith.
After World War II, he established the Otam Gakuen, a musical school.
Otani married Tomoko, younger sister of Empress Nagako.