The Mystique of Transmission: On an Early Chan History and Its Contexts

Kobo ebook | May 6, 2007

byWendi Adamek

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The Mystique of Transmission is a close reading of a late-eighth-century Chan/Zen Buddhist hagiographical work, the Lidai fabao ji ( Record of the Dharma-Jewel Through the Generations), and is its first English translation. The text is the only remaining relic of the little-known Bao Tang Chan school of Sichuan, and combines a sectarian history of Buddhism and Chan in China with an account of the eighth-century Chan master Wuzhu in Sichuan.

Chinese religions scholar Wendi Adamek compares the Lidai fabao ji with other sources from the fourth through eighth centuries, chronicling changes in the doctrines and practices involved in transmitting medieval Chinese Buddhist teachings. While Adamek is concerned with familiar Chan themes like patriarchal genealogies and the ideology of sudden enlightenment, she also highlights topics that make Lidai fabao ji distinctive: formless practice, the inclusion of female practitioners, the influence of Daoist metaphysics, and connections with early Tibetan Buddhism.

The Lidai fabao ji was unearthed in the early twentieth century in the Mogao caves at the Silk Road oasis of Dunhuang in northwestern China. Discovery of the Dunhuang manuscripts has been compared with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, as these documents have radically changed our understanding of medieval China and Buddhism. A crucial volume for students and scholars, The Mystique of Transmission offers a rare glimpse of a lost world and fills an important gap in the timeline of Chinese and Buddhist history.

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The Mystique of Transmission is a close reading of a late-eighth-century Chan/Zen Buddhist hagiographical work, the Lidai fabao ji ( Record of the Dharma-Jewel Through the Generations), and is its first English translation. The text is the only remaining relic of the little-known Bao Tang Chan school of Sichuan, and combines a sectari...

Wendi L. Adamek is assistant professor of Chinese religions at Barnard College/Columbia University. She specializes in medieval Chinese Buddhism. Her current research interests include Buddhist nuns of the Tang dynasty, Buddhist donor practices, and religious art of the Silk Road.

other books by Wendi Adamek

Format:Kobo ebookPublished:May 6, 2007Publisher:Columbia University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0231510020

ISBN - 13:9780231510028

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments - xiii

Part 1
The Mystique of Transmission - 1
Chapter 1- Authority and Authenticity - 3
Fabrications - 3
On the Backgroud of the Lidai fabao ji - 6
An Overview - 12
Chapter 2 - Transmission and Translation - 17
The Challenge of Continuity - 17
Summary of the Contents of the Lidai fabao ji - 19
Emperor of the Ming Han - 21
Daoan and Transmission of Forms - 23
Buddhabhadra and Transmission of Lineage - 33
Huiyan's Transmission of Space and Place - 40
The Mystique of Legitimacy - 52
Conclusion - 54
Chapter 3 - Transmission and Lay Practice - 55
The Interdependence of Lay and Ordained Practice - 55
Criteria of Authenticity of the Dharma and the Authority of the Ordained - 58
The Role of the Bodhisattva Precepts in Lay Devotional Practice - 67
Conclusion - 88
Chapter 4 - Material Buddhism and the Dharma Kings - 91
The Dangers of Empire - 91
The Northern Wei and Spiritual Materialism - 92
Empires of Signs - 98
The Fu fazang zhuan - 101
The Legacy of Tiantai Zhiyi - 110
The Renwang jing - 114
The Sanjie (Three Levels) Movement - 120
Imaginary Cultic Robes - 128
Conclusion - 134
Chapter 5 - Robes and Patriarchs - 136
The "Chan" Question - 136
Tales of the Chan Patriarchs - 138
A Genealogy of Patriarchal Lineages - 158
Shenhui's Rhetoric - 171
Inconceivable Robes in the Vajrasamadhi-sutra and the Platform Sutra - 179
Robes Purple and Gold - 182
The Reforms of Emperor Xuanzong - 189
Chapter 6 Wuzhu and Others - 194
The Second Part of the Lidai fabao ji - 194
A Note About Style - 195
Mass Precepts Ceremonies and Formless Precepts - 197
Transmission from Wixiang to Wuzhu - 204
Locating Wuzhu - 214
Antinomianism in the Monastery - 218
Women in the Lidai fabao ji - 226
Daoists in the Dharma Hall - 237
Chapter 7 - The Legacy of the Lidai fabao ji
The Portrait-Eulogy for Wuzhu - 254
Developments After the Lidai fabao ji - 276
Conclusion - 292

Part 2
Annotated Translation of the Lidai Fabao Ji
Section 1 - Sources and the Legend of Emperor Ming of the Han - 300
Section 2 - Buddhism in China - 305
Section 3 - Transmission from China to India (the Fu fazang zhuan) - 307
Section 4 - The First Patriarch, Bodhidharmatrata - 310
Section 5 - The Second Patriarch, Huiki - 313
Section 6 - The Third Patriarch - Sengcan - 315
7 - The Fourth Patriarch - Daoxin
8 - The Fifth Patriarch - Hongren - 319
9 - The Sixth Patriarch - Huineng, Part 1 - 320
10 - Dharma Master Daoan and the Scripture Quotations - 323
11 - Huineng Part 2 - 328
12 - Zhishen and Empress Qu - 330
13 - Chan Master Zhishen - 333
14 - Chan Master Chuji - 334
15 - Chan Master Wuxiang - 335
16 - The Venerable Shenhui - 339
17 - Discourses of the Venerable Wuzhu - 342
18 - Wuzhu and Wuxiang - 343
19 - Du Hongjian's Arrival in Shu - 352
20 - Du Hongjian and the Wuzhu Meet - 356
21 - Cui Gan Visits the Wuzhu - 362
22 - Dialogue with Chan Master Tiwu - 368
23 - Dialogue with Chan Master Huiyi - 370
24 - Dialogue with Masters Yijing, Zhumo, and Tangwen - 370
25 - Dialogue with Master Jingzang - 373
26 - Dialogue with Master Zhiyi - 374
27 - Dialogue with Master Zhongxin - 375
28 - Dialogue with Dharma Master Falun - 376
29 - Dialogue with the Brothers Yixing and Huiming - 378
30 - Dialogue with Changjingjin and Liaojianxing (Female Disciples) - 379
31 - Excerpts and Quotations Part 1 - 381
32 - Excerpts and Quotations Part 2 - 385
33 - Tea Gatha - 386
34 - Dialogue with Daoists - 388
35 - Dialogue with Dharma Masters - 392
36 - Dialogue with Vinaya Masters - 392
37 - Dialogue with Treatise Masters - 395
38 - Trading Quotations with Masters Daoyou, Mingfa, and Guanlu - 397
39 - Taking on Chan Disciples While Drinking Tea - 398
40 - Dialogue with Master Xiongjun - 399
41 - Dialogue with Master Fayaun Accompanied by His Mother - 399
42 - Discourse to Lay Honors - 401
43 - Portrait-Eulogy and Final Scene - 402

Notes - 407
Appendix - 511
Abbreviations - 521
Bibliography - 523
Index - 557

Editorial Reviews

Massive and masterful, insightful and thorough, articulate and engaging--the scholarship presented here is truly impressive.