State of Japanese Buddhism

Forum for discussion of East Asian Buddhism. Questions specific to one school are best posted in the appropriate sub-forum.
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Su DongPo
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Re: State of Japanese Buddhism

Post by Su DongPo » Fri Feb 04, 2011 9:56 am

Thanks, Tatsuo. I am sure the picture is much more complicated than my questions suggest it might be. I did not know of the ascetic training you cite, for example.

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Re: State of Japanese Buddhism

Post by Astus » Fri Feb 04, 2011 11:23 am

In the Myoshin-ji school of Rinzai Zen to be a head of the meditation hall (i.e. an actual Zen teacher who trains others) one is required to be unmarried and live pretty much like a monk in other countries. Just another example.

"The shike (師家) is the teacher (師) in the monastic household (家). He is the "true" shukke who has - ideally, but not necessarily - gone through all the koan of the particular monastic koan-system, and who stays permanently in monastic life leading the monastery and guiding the monks, thus also referred to as the "elder teacher in the monk's hall" (sōdō rōshi). He has received the certificate of enlightenment (inka shōmei) just as he himself can transmit this to his successor. Unless returning to lay life, or taking up a position as priest in a temple, a shike within the Myoushinji sect is not allowed to marry but must keep the strict rules of renouncement. As such he has the prestige and generally owns the respect of being a true Zen master, a living symbol of the Zen monastic tradition, the quintessence of zen virtues ideally incarnating wisdom, spirituality, strict discipline, individuality, and yet gentle social personality. He is, in a certain sense, the religious main figure."
(Jørn Borup: Japanese Rinzai Zen Buddhism: Myōshinji, a Living Religion, p. 60)
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.

1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"

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Su DongPo
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Re: Should indiviuals be married and be monk?

Post by Su DongPo » Sun Feb 20, 2011 9:04 am

Su DongPo wrote:I wonder if Japan is ripe for a Buddhist revival.
I still haven't scratched the surface of Japanese Buddhism, but I think this comment was a bit presumptuous.

Hard enough to know my own mind, and impossible to know the mind of another. Of an entire tradition or culture? That's probably nutty...

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