Mandalas in exoteric schools

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rory
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Re: Mandalas in exoteric schools

Post by rory » Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:46 pm

rory wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:05 am
It may not be weird Japanese religion as I recall that Chinese meditators travelled via Daoist landscape paintings
bother I think it may have been in one of Livia Kohn's books, it quite interested me no end.


Rory
Agreed! I want to hear more about this.

Rory, do you remember what book Kohn says this in?
This was some years ago but I believe it was in Taoist Meditation and Longevity Techniques ed. Livia Kohn, University of Michigan 1989

gassho
Rory
Namu Kanzeon Bosatsu
Chih-I:
The Tai-ching states "the women in the realms of Mara, Sakra and Brahma all neither abandoned ( their old) bodies nor received (new) bodies. They all received buddhahood with their current bodies (genshin)" Thus these verses state that the dharma nature is like a great ocean. No right or wrong is preached (within it) Ordinary people and sages are equal, without superiority or inferiority
Paul, Groner "The Lotus Sutra in Japanese Culture"eds. Tanabe p. 58
https://www.tendai-usa.org/

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Queequeg
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Re: Mandalas in exoteric schools

Post by Queequeg » Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:03 pm

rory wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 6:46 pm
rory wrote:
Sun Apr 08, 2018 1:05 am
It may not be weird Japanese religion as I recall that Chinese meditators travelled via Daoist landscape paintings
bother I think it may have been in one of Livia Kohn's books, it quite interested me no end.


Rory
Agreed! I want to hear more about this.

Rory, do you remember what book Kohn says this in?
This was some years ago but I believe it was in Taoist Meditation and Longevity Techniques ed. Livia Kohn, University of Michigan 1989

gassho
Rory
I asked my wife about the Daoism connection. She knew about these paintings and practices but was not sure if and how they might be related to practices in Japan.

Speculating on my part, the manner of interaction with the object is an imaginative journey into a real landscape does show similarities that might be closer than the nature of interaction with Mandala in Japanese Buddhism - as well as I understand it, which is not much at all.

Its not clear if the pilgrimage paintings were understood as symbols or 'extensions' of the actual place. In the case of the Kasuga Shrine paintings, it seems that the paintings were not mere symbols, but actually were extensions of the place.

As I mentioned above, esoteric sensibilities, along with other influences that would seem foreign to our materialistic assumptions about reality, permeated pre-modern Japanese culture. Its hard to delineate what is Buddhist, what comes from the native shaman traditions, what is Daoist, etc. In this respect, Yamabushi are really interesting - they are one of these unique intersections outside the formal institutions that seamlessly incorporate various influences in something that is unmistakably Japanese.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

I think each human being has things to find out in his own life that are inescapable. They’ll find them out the easy way or the hard way, or whatever.
-Jerry Garcia

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rory
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Location: SouthEast USA

Re: Mandalas in exoteric schools

Post by rory » Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:27 am

Queequeg wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:03 pm

As I mentioned above, esoteric sensibilities, along with other influences that would seem foreign to our materialistic assumptions about reality, permeated pre-modern Japanese culture. Its hard to delineate what is Buddhist, what comes from the native shaman traditions, what is Daoist, etc. In this respect, Yamabushi are really interesting - they are one of these unique intersections outside the formal institutions that seamlessly incorporate various influences in something that is unmistakably Japanese.
I'm just reading Ryuichi Abe's dissertation "From Kukai to Kakuban" and he says early in, that when Kukai brought esoteric practices back to Japan from China in the 6th century they were deemed exotic and foreign but they subsequently have entirely permeated Japanese culture to today; Shugendo, goma rituals etc He also talks about ritual and performance and esoteric theory. I do think you need to read about this to really understand how much transmission of various intellectual currents was going on. Kakuban the great reviver of Shingon consciously used Daoist elements and of course in the Heian period Chinese geomancy (feng-shui) was also common.

as for materialist assumptions, heh isn't that so 19th century? For with the advent of quantuum physics, physicists are not sure what is going on.
gassho
Rory
Namu Kanzeon Bosatsu
Chih-I:
The Tai-ching states "the women in the realms of Mara, Sakra and Brahma all neither abandoned ( their old) bodies nor received (new) bodies. They all received buddhahood with their current bodies (genshin)" Thus these verses state that the dharma nature is like a great ocean. No right or wrong is preached (within it) Ordinary people and sages are equal, without superiority or inferiority
Paul, Groner "The Lotus Sutra in Japanese Culture"eds. Tanabe p. 58
https://www.tendai-usa.org/

Varis
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Joined: Tue Jul 11, 2017 5:09 am

Re: Mandalas in exoteric schools

Post by Varis » Fri May 04, 2018 3:49 am

Queequeg wrote:
Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:03 pm
I asked my wife about the Daoism connection. She knew about these paintings and practices but was not sure if and how they might be related to practices in Japan.

Speculating on my part, the manner of interaction with the object is an imaginative journey into a real landscape does show similarities that might be closer than the nature of interaction with Mandala in Japanese Buddhism - as well as I understand it, which is not much at all.

Its not clear if the pilgrimage paintings were understood as symbols or 'extensions' of the actual place. In the case of the Kasuga Shrine paintings, it seems that the paintings were not mere symbols, but actually were extensions of the place.

As I mentioned above, esoteric sensibilities, along with other influences that would seem foreign to our materialistic assumptions about reality, permeated pre-modern Japanese culture. Its hard to delineate what is Buddhist, what comes from the native shaman traditions, what is Daoist, etc. In this respect, Yamabushi are really interesting - they are one of these unique intersections outside the formal institutions that seamlessly incorporate various influences in something that is unmistakably Japanese.
I was researching about Jainism today, and I came across these paintings called "Tirtha Patas". They are maps/paintings of pilgrimage sites used in place of actual pilgrimage, apparently these Patas exist in Hinduism and Buddhism as well. I wonder if this is the same thing as those "mandaras" you mentioned.

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Queequeg
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Re: Mandalas in exoteric schools

Post by Queequeg » Fri May 04, 2018 3:47 pm

Varis wrote:
Fri May 04, 2018 3:49 am
I was researching about Jainism today, and I came across these paintings called "Tirtha Patas". They are maps/paintings of pilgrimage sites used in place of actual pilgrimage, apparently these Patas exist in Hinduism and Buddhism as well. I wonder if this is the same thing as those "mandaras" you mentioned.
:thanks: Did you edit your post? There was a link to an article... I passed that on to my wife and she is now very intrigued. She is going to follow up on that lead. You might get a footnote in an academic paper! :tongue:
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

I think each human being has things to find out in his own life that are inescapable. They’ll find them out the easy way or the hard way, or whatever.
-Jerry Garcia

Varis
Posts: 135
Joined: Tue Jul 11, 2017 5:09 am

Re: Mandalas in exoteric schools

Post by Varis » Fri May 04, 2018 4:44 pm

Queequeg wrote:
Fri May 04, 2018 3:47 pm
:thanks: Did you edit your post? There was a link to an article... I passed that on to my wife and she is now very intrigued. She is going to follow up on that lead. You might get a footnote in an academic paper! :tongue:
Yes, I was going to replace it later with an academic article on the subject. I hope your wife finds something interesting! :smile:

The original article I linked is here:
http://www.tribuneindia.com/2009/200903 ... um/art.htm

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