Monday, August 29, 2016

Presentation on the Obaku Canon in Madrid, Spain

Glad to have a chance to present at a conference in Madrid, Spain about the Obaku Canon in Eurupe.

Title: Finding the First Chinese Tripitaka in Europe: The 1872 Iwakura Mission in Britain and the Mystery of Ōbaku Canon in the India Office Library

Abstract: Although the creation of the Chinese Buddhist canon is a well-known event in East Asian cultural sphere, little is known about when and how Westerners became interested in this great textual tradition. As far as I know, the first Chinese Buddhist canon in Europe was a version of Northern Ming Canon which was reprinted in the main section of the Jiaxing canon and later in the Obaku canon in 1673 in Japan because of the promotion of the Jiaxing canon by the Chinese monk Yinyuan Longqi (1592-1673), the founder of the Japanese Obaku Zen tradition. In the late nineteenth century, Max Müller (1823-1900), the early pioneer in comparative religion, started a massive translation project of “Sacred Books of the East.” For this project, a request for Buddhist books was sent to Japan and the Japanese ambassador Iwakura Tomomi (1825-1883), the court noble who initiated the Meiji Restoration, responded with a delivery of an entire set of the Obaku edition to the Indian Office Library in London. (This set of the canon is still housed in London) Sinologist Samuel Beal (1825-1889) and Max Müller’s Japanese student Nanjō Bunyū (1849-1927) translated its entire catalogue into English in 1876 and 1883 respectively. In an attempt to rediscover the first Chinese canon in the West, my paper will investigate various historical events leading to the arrival of this canon in Europe and how Western interests in Eastern religions brought the canon to Britain through diplomatic maneuvers.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Reviews of Spreading Buddha's Word in East Asia

So far, our book has received two positive reviews. Thanks the reviewers for their work.

Courtney Bruntz. Review of Wu, Jiang; Chia, Lucille, eds., Spreading Buddha's Word in East Asia: The Formation and Transformation of the Chinese Buddhist Canon. H-Buddhism, H-Net Reviews. July, 2016.

Chun-fang Yu. Review of Wu, Jiang; Chia, Lucille, eds., Spreading Buddha's Word in East Asia: The Formation and Transformation of the Chinese Buddhist Canon.J Am Acad Relig (2016) 84 (2): 574-578.
doi: 10.1093/jaarel/lfw020
First published online: April 3, 2016

Monday, August 15, 2016

Dongming Temple 東明寺 in Zhejiang

Last May (2015), during the conference on Jingshan Canon in Hangzhou, I visited the rebuilt Dongming monastery 東明寺 which is not far away from Jingshan. It is a very important monastery in the early and late Ming Buddhism. Legend says the Jianwen emperor 建文帝 of the Ming did not die during the bloody war his uncle Yongle launched. Instead, He fled Nanjing and hid in Dongming monastery as a monk. There is still an old tree he planted. The temple structure was destroyed by the Japanese bombing during the war. A huge controversy broke out during the late Ming about the identities of several early Ming monk along Dongming Huichan's 東明慧旵 line of transmission: Haizhou Ci 海舟慈, Baofeng Xuan 寶峰瑄, I have discussions about this dispute in my Enlightenment in Dispute (Oxford 2008, p. 38, 304) and will write more in future blogs.

Friday, August 5, 2016

Tanaka Chisei's New Book on Obaku Manpukuji's Annual Ritual Routine and Monastic Ceremonies 田中智誠 著: 黄檗山の十二ヶ月

I am honored to receive from Tanaka Chisei 田中智誠 Osho three copies of his new book on Obaku Annual Ritual Routine and Monastic Ceremonies, entitled Ōbakusan no jūnikagetsu: Manpukuji no nenchū gyōji to hinami otomo sono setsurei to sesshoku 黄檗山の十二ヶ月 : 萬福寺の年中行事と日次御供、その節令と節食. It comes with a personal note in beautiful handwriting. I will deposit one copy in our library. Thank you, Tanaka san.

Here is the full bibliographical information in worldcat:

黄檗山の十二ヶ月 : 萬福寺の年中行事と日次御供、その節令と節食 /
Ōbakusan no jūnikagetsu : Manpukuji no nenchū gyōji to hinami otomo sono setsurei to sesshoku.

Author: 田中智誠 著 田中 智誠 ; ; chisei tanaka
Publisher: 東林派下梅嶺禅師湖東三ヶ道場黄檗宗鳳翔山正瑞禅寺, higashiōmi : tōrinha kabaireizenji kotō sanke dōjō ōbakushū hōshōsan seizuizendera

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