Gashin Tomomitsu, a 30-year-old Buddhist monk, has organized unique spiritual and cultural events over the past four years, attracting young people who would otherwise have little religious interaction in their daily lives.

Offering a chance to experience chanting, flower arrangement, sutra copying and other traditional pursuits, the latest event drew about 2,000 people in April.

That was up from 70 for the first event held in September 2011, and roughly 70 percent of the participants were in their 20s and 30s.