How Zen Became Zen
The Dispute over Enlightenment and the Formation of Chan Buddhism in Song-Dynasty China
Publication Year: 2008
Published by: University of Hawai'i Press
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This book is about a set of crucial developments that took place within Chinese Buddhism in the Song dynasty (960–1279) that had a defining impact on the evolution of Zen Buddhism in all of East Asia and that came to permanently shape conceptions about the nature of Zen and the issues it is concerned with...
Chapter 1 Chan Buddhism in the Song: Some Background
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In 1101, shortly after he had ascended the throne, the young emperor Huizong (r. 1101–1126) wrote a preface for an important Chan Buddhist transmission history and ordered the work included in the Buddhist canon. In his preface to this work, the Jianzhong Jingguo xudeng lu (Continuation of the record...
Chapter 2 The Chan School and the Song State
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In 955, the Latter Zhou (Hou Zhou, 951–960) began a vigorous suppression of Buddhism when the emperor Shizong (r. 954–959) ordered all monasteries in his realm that lacked an imperially bestowed name plaque destroyed. 1 Records indicate that 30,336 monasteries were dismantled, while only 2,694...
Chapter 3 Procreation and Patronage in the Song Chan School
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In the previous chapter, I demonstrated that state policies, particularly in the Northern Song, had a profound impact on the development of monastic Buddhism, creating an environment that facilitated and encouraged the growth of the Chan school, enabling it to flourish and evolve...
Chapter 4 A New Chan Tradition: The Reinvention of the Caodong Lineage in the Song
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Thus far, I have argued for the great influence certain government policies had on the formation of the Chan school in the Song. I have also shown that the individual Chan lineages were highly dependent on government officials and other members of the educated elite for crucial political and economic support...
Chapter 5 A Dog Has No Buddha-Nature: Kanhua Chan and Dahui Zonggao’s Attacks on Silent Illumination
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The Caodong tradition underwent, as we have seen, a remarkable revival and reinvention beginning in the late eleventh century that propelled it onto the national stage and made it one of the leading groups of elite Buddhism. The dharma brothers Furong Daokai and Dahong Baoen were the coarchitects of this new Caodong tradition...
Chapter 6 The Caodong Tradition as the Target of Attacks by the Linji Tradition
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Dahui did not leave his audience in any doubt about his views on silent illumination. It has long been a question in the study of Song Chan, however, who exactly Dahui was condemning when he raged at “heretical teachers of silent illumination Chan,” since he rarely mentioned any names or other specifics...
Chapter 7 Silent Illumination and the Caodong Tradition
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In the previous chapter, I argued that Dahui meant to target the entire new Caodong tradition of the twelfth century, including Hongzhi Zhengjue, with his attacks on silent illumination. There are also strong indications that before Dahui, Zhenjing Kewen, too, criticized the teachings of the new Caodong tradition...
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Beginning in the late eleventh century, the religious genius of the masters of the Caodong revival created what was essentially a whole new tradition of Chan, with a complete hagiography, a robust literature, and a distinctive style of instruction and meditation. The Linji tradition, which was well established...
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Publication Year: 2008