Chinese Buddhism

  1. Donors of Longmen: Faith, Politics, and Patronage in Medieval Chinese Buddhis Sculpture

    Donors of Longmen is the first work in a Western language to re-create the history of the Longmen Grottoes, one of China's great stone sculpture treasure houses. Longmen, a UNESCO World Heritage site located near the old capital of Luoyang in modern Henan Province, consists of thousands of ancient cave chapels and shrines containing Buddhist icons of all sizes that were carved into the towering limestone cliffs from the fifth to the eighth centuries.

  2. The Lotus Sutra

    Since its appearance in China in the third century, the Lotus Sutra has been regarded as one of the most illustrious scriptures in the Mahayana Buddhist canon. The object of intense veneration among generations of Buddhists in China, Korea, Japan, and other parts of East Asia, it has attracted more commentary than any other Buddhist scripture and has had a profound impact on the great works of Japanese and Chinese literature. Conceived as a drama of colossal proportions, the text takes on new meaning in Burton Watson's translation.

  3. The Buddhist I Ching

    For centuries the I Ching has been used as a basic map of conscious development, containing the underlying principles of all religions, and highly prized by followers of Buddhism. Chih-hsu Ou-i uses the concepts of Tian Tai Buddhism to elucidate the I Ching —concentration and insight, calmness and wisdom, and various levels of realization. Skillfully translated by Thomas Cleary, this work presents the complete text of the I Ching plus the only Buddhist interpretation of the oracle.

  4. Our Great Qing

    Although it is generally believed that the Manchus controlled the Mongols through their patronage of Tibetan Buddhism, scant attention has been paid to the Mongol view of the Qing imperial project. In contrast to other accounts of Manchu rule, Our Great Qing focuses not only on what images the metropole wished to project into Mongolia, but also on what images the Mongols acknowledged themselves. Rather than accepting the Manchu’s use of Buddhism, Johan Elverskog begins by questioning the static, unhistorical, and hegemonic view of political life implicit in the Buddhist explanation. By stressing instead the fluidity of identity and Buddhist practice as processes continually developing in relation to state formations, this work explores how Qing policies were understood by Mongols and how they came to see themselves as Qing subjects.

  5. China's Buddhist Culture

    This book elaborates and elucidates the concepts and characteristics of China's Buddhist culture with special emphasis on two aspects: (1) the historical evolution of Chinese Buddhism as well as related ancient books, records, basic doctrines, systems and protocols, and famous historical and cultural sites; and (2) the influence of Buddhism on such aspects of Chinese culture as politics, ethics, philosophy, literature and art, and folk customs, as well as the differences and similarities between Buddhism and both Confucianism and Taoism. This book further summarizes the structure, core beliefs, internal and external relations, root of evolution, and peculiarity of China's Buddhist culture system. This book aims to provide an in-depth understanding of the historical status of Buddhism and its important role in the evolution of Chinese culture.

  6. Buddhism and Taoism Face to Face

    Christine Mollier reveals in this volume previously unexplored dimensions of the interaction between Buddhism and Taoism in medieval China. While scholars of Chinese religions have long recognized the mutual influences linking the two traditions, Mollier here brings to light their intense contest for hegemony in the domains of scripture and ritual. Drawing on a far-reaching investigation of canonical texts, together with manuscript sources from Dunhuang and the monastic libraries of Japan--many of them studied here for the first time--she demonstrates the competition and complementarity of the two great Chinese religions in their quest to address personal and collective fears of diverse ills, including sorcery, famine, and untimely death.

  7. Philosophy of Mind in Sixth-Century China

    Of the many translators who carried the Buddhist doctrine to China, Paramärtha, a missionary-monk who arrived in China in A.D. 546, ranks as the translator par excellence of the sixth century. Introducing philosophical ideas that would subsequently excite the Chinese imagination to develop the great schools of Sui and Tang Buddhism, Paramartha's translations are almost exclusively of Yogacara Buddhist texts on the nature of the mind and consciousness.

  8. An Introduction to Chinese Philosophy

    It is noteworthy that the two most recent textbooks that bear this title, the current one by Karyn Lai, and one by JeeLoo Liu (2006, Blackwell; also reviewed on NDPR), limit themselves to introducing the reader to early Chinese philosophy (Warring States period through the Han -- roughly 5th century BCE through 3rd century CE) and the early schools of Chinese Buddhism (from ca. 1st through 6th centuries CE).

  9. Secrets of the Lotus

    Within the context of contemporary Western Buddhism, Secrets of the Lotus provides a unique collection of materials on Buddhist meditation. It it includes translations of and commentaries on foundational meditation texts in the Theravada and Japanese Zen traditions:

    • The Satipatthana Sutta, the Vimuttimagga, the Zazen-gi with Mumon Yamada Roshi's teisho, and Hakuin's commentary on the Heart Sutra

    • A discussion of zazen within the Rinzai tradition by a contemporary Zen Priest (the Rev. Eshin Nishimura);

  10. An Introduction to Hua-yen Buddhism

    Entry Into the Inconceivable is an introduction to the philosophy of the Hua-yen school of Buddhism, one of the cornerstones of East Asian Buddhist thought. Cleary presents a survey of the unique Buddhist scripture on which the Hua-yen teaching is based and a brief history of its introduction into China. He also presents a succinct analysis of the essential metaphysics of Hua-yen Buddhism as it developed during China's golden age and full translations of four basic texts by seminal thinkers of the school.

  11. The Zen Teaching of Huang Po on the transmission of mind

    This complete translation of the original collection of sermons, dialogues, and anecdotes of Huang Po, the illustrious Chinese master of the Tang Dynasty, allows the Western reader to gain an understanding of Zen from the original source, one of the key works in its teachings; it also offers deep and often startling insights into the rich treasures of Eastern thought. Nowhere is the use of paradox in Zen illustrated better than in the teaching of Huang Po, who shows how the experience of intuitive knowledge that reveals to a man what he is cannot be communicated by words.

  12. Pure Land Buddhism in China: A Doctrinal History

    This present book systemizes the notes of lectures that I gave on numerous occasions at Taisho University. As these notes are now being printed in book form, this book will be entitled Pure Land Buddhism in China: A Doctrinal History, which points to the major concern of this work: the development and changes that Pure Land doctrines have undergone in China. However, religious doctrines are accompanied by faith, and this in turn carries within itself an impetus to dissemination and expansion.

  13. Buddhism and Taoism Face to Face

    Christine Mollier reveals in this volume previously unexplored dimensions of the interaction between Buddhism and Taoism in medieval China. While scholars of Chinese religions have long recognized the mutual influences linking the two traditions, Mollier here brings to light their intense contest for hegemony in the domains of scripture and ritual.

  14. Buddhism in China: A Historical Survey

    This book is written primarily for those people who already have a general acquaintance with the history and religions of the Far East, with some particular interest in Chinese history and civilization, and those who desire to know more about the development of Buddhism in China. It also serves as a useful source of collateral readings for courses dealing with the history and culture of China and East Asia.

  15. 中国天台宗的和谐思想及其现代诠释

    一、圆融和谐的实相本体论––天台宗的三谛思想

      三谛这个名词,并非是天台智者所创,从它的义理方面来说,许多经典都具备了三谛的意义;而三谛名字的出现,一般认为是出自《仁王》和《璎珞》这两部经典。智者在《妙法莲华经玄义》卷二中云:

      明三谛者,众经备有其义,而名出《璎珞》《仁王》,谓有谛、无谛、中道第一义谛。今经亦有其义,寿量云:非如非异即中道,如即真,异即俗。

      三谛之名,有不同的称呼。如有谛,亦可称为俗谛、世谛、假谛;无谛亦可称为真谛、空谛、第一义谛;中道第一义谛亦可称为中谛、第一义谛、一实谛,亦可名为虚空、佛性、法界、如如、如来藏等。现在为了方便,即将三谛称之为“空谛”、“假谛”和“中谛”。

      通常说法认为,天台的“三谛义”来源于《中论》“四谛品”中的“三是偈”:

      因缘所生法,我说即是空;亦为是假名,亦是中道义。

      这个著名的“三是偈”,表达了龙树中观学的“缘起性空”的思想。但是在三论师那里,此偈只是阐述了“真俗二谛”的道理,而把“中道义”当作是“体”:

      “因缘生法”是俗谛,“即是空”是真谛,“亦是中道义”是体。

  16. 中国佛教的圆融精神及其现代意义

    圆融,乃“中国化”佛学——天台宗、华严宗、禅宗、真言宗等诸宗思想的重要内容,霍韬晦先生认为:绝对与圆融,乃中国佛学的特质,“中国佛教的整个方向都是向圆融之路而趋”。此言可谓如实。圆融,近代以来也曾受到一些学者的批评,认为是中国佛学的一大缺点。从圆融思想的内涵看,其形成虽然不无中国本土儒、道两家思想的制约,而系依据印度大乘经论诠释发挥,处处引经据典,深得大乘精髓,是中印圣者智慧的结晶。在世界各种宗教教义中,圆融思想独树一帜,引人注目,有其独具的价值,对21世纪的人类而言,特具现实意义。

      一、圆融思想的源流及其哲学义蕴

      圆融一语,很难找到相对应的梵、巴原语,亦非中国诸子百家古籍中本有的词语,是中国佛教理论家所创造。《辞源》解释:“圆融,佛教语。破除偏执,圆满融通。”圆,《说文》释为“圜全也”,圜则“天体也”,是则“圆”字之义,是像天一样完全。“融”字早见于《左传》等,《辞源》解释有明亮、溶化、流通长远、和谐等义。圆与融组合在一起,字面含义基本为圆满融通,有整体无亏、无滞碍、不偏执、消融一切矛盾、和谐和解的意思。在佛学中,圆融更有其特定的深刻义蕴。《佛光大词典》解释说: