He was initiated into priesthood by Teiken, chief priest of the Daigoji Temple.
Shokaku officiated at the ceremony of initiation into priesthood of ex-Emperor Shirakawa in 1096.
He built the Samboin Hall in the compound of the Daigoji Temple (1113) and repaired its cathedral over many years. The temple became a famous seat of Buddhist learning, many scholars and priests of high virtue having been among his followers. It was during his time that the temple was the most prosperous. Besides being the chief priest of that temple, he held the distinguished position of head of the Todaiji and Toji temples. He often conducted services at the request of the public.
Shokaku was appointed Gon-no-sojo (Abbot) in 1128. Of his 20 odd direct disciples, Jokai opened the Samboin school of learning, Shoken the Kongo-oin school, and Kenkaku the Rishoin school. They are called the Three Daigo Schools.