A History of Japanese Buddhism by Kenji Matsuo

By Kenji Matsuo

This primary significant examine in English on eastern Buddhism by way of one among Japan's so much distinctive students within the box of spiritual reviews is to be generally welcomed. the main target of the paintings is at the culture of the monk (o-bo-san) because the major agent of Buddhism, including the historic methods during which priests have built eastern Buddhism because it looks right now.

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Underlying this was a trend among Buddhist monks to undertake mountain-based ascetic training in order to obtain magical powers. training places were developed on designated ‘holy mountains’ at different localities. From the middle to the end of the Heian era, as Yoshino (Nara) and Kumano (Wakayama) became places for worship for the emperors and aristocrats, Mt O>mine (located between the two regions) was established as a training place for shugendo#. Difference between o#jo# and jo#butsu In the explanation about Ku#kai, the question of jo#butsu was considered.

However, some recent research has questioned the very existence of Prince sho#toku, suggesting that he was an idealized fabrication. as documentary resources of ancient Japan are very limited, there are few incidents and episodes of which we can be certain. the same is true regarding figures such as Jesus Christ. It is only the legends collected in the Gospels and handed down to early churches that tell about Jesus Christ; consequently, some research papers 2 42 03 Chapter 02 HJB:Master Testpages HJB 10/10/07 11:21 Page 43 Ancient Buddhism – Official Monks doubting his existence have been published.

Saicho#’s basic ideas were expressed in brief together with his intention to establish ordination under Mahayana Buddhism. the Hosso# sect took a position that there were three levels of teachings of the Buddha to be taught according to the level of ability of people receiving teachings. they were sho#mon-jo# (listen to the Buddha teachings to attain one’s own enlightenment), Engaku-jo# (attain enlightenment of one’s own not in accordance with the Buddha’s teachings) and Bosatsu-jo# (attain enlightenment not only for oneself but for the salvation of others).

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