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72 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period


Chapter Two





I. The Advent of Japanese Buddhism
II. The Four Great Lineages of Taiwan Buddhism During the Japanese Period
     A. Overview
     B. Ven. Shanhui (1881-1945) and the Lingquan ("Spirit Spring") Temple Lineage
     C. Ven. Benyuan (1883-1946) and the Lingyun ("Soaring Clouds") Temple Lineage
     D. Ven. Jueli (1881-1933), Ven. Miaoguo (1884-1964), and the Fayun ("Dharma Cloud") Temple Lineage
     E. Ven. Yongding (1877-1939) and the Chaofeng ("Surpassing the Peak") Temple Lineage
     F. Conclusions



     When China ceded Taiwan to Japan at the end of the Sino-Japanese War in 1895, she evidently did not feel she was losing anything valuable. The Qing dynasty official who signed the Treaty of Shimonoseki on behalf of the Chinese court and gave Taiwan away, Li Hongzhang (1823-1901), later wrote in his Memoirs:

Formosans are neither of us nor with us, and we praise all the ancestors that this is so! In all Asia, in ail the world, I believe there are no tribes of animals called men more degraded and filthy than these people of Taiwan. And have we not enough of criminals and low creatures to deal with on the mainland? These people are not farmers, they are no hillmen, nor hunters of wild beasts whose skins bring in money and keep men's bodies warm in the cold winters. ...They are cut-throats, all of them, along the coasts arid back into the jungles. And so they have been from the days of Chia-Ch'ing to the present time.(1)

While we must be careful not to put too much stock in his assessment of the people of Taiwan (after all, there must have been some farmers on the island!), his harsh words still reflect to some extent the societal and environmental realities that contributed to the difficulties of life at that time. We have already seen the



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extent to which these realities helped give shape to the Buddhism found in Taiwan during the Qing; now we shall examine what happened after the treaty went into effect and Taiwan became part of the Japanese Empire.




The ethnic Chinese and Polynesian aboriginal peoples of Taiwan did not agree with the Qing court that their territory should or could be so lightly given away to the Japanese imperial government. In the years following 1895, many Taiwanese people formed rebel armies and rose up to fight the Japanese, several of them under the banner of a hoped-for independent Republic of Taiwan. The Japanese responded quickly and forcefully, sending in troops to put down the rebels and restore order.(2) Like many armies, the Japanese army came equipped with chaplains to minister to the spiritual needs of its soldiers, and in this way Japanese Buddhism entered Taiwan.(3)

     These chaplain-missionaries came from many schools [shū 宗] and sects [ha 派] of Japanese Buddhism. At first, their primary task was to provide spiritual service only to the troops and other Japanese citizens who had migrated into Taiwan. It was because these people had prior affiliations with particular lines of Japanese Buddhism that so many schools were represented among the influx of clergy; this way most Japanese citizens could participate in the kind and style of



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religious activities to which they had previously been accustomed. Among the first arrivals, the Sōtō School 曹洞宗 of Zen, the Shinshū Honganji Sect 真宗本願寺派, the Shinshū Ōtani Sect 真宗大谷派, the Jōdo (or Pure Land) School 淨土宗, and the Shingon School 真言宗 sent in the largest contingents.(4)

     During the period of turmoil in which the Japanese had to exert the most effort to pacify the island, not many Japanese citizens came to Taiwan.(5) As a result of this, the monks sought ways to gain influence among the Chinese population, and began to establish missionary preaching stations. However, it soon became apparent that the language barrier had to be overcome before they could make any headway, and so they got funds from their headquarters in Japan to begin setting up Japanese language schools and charity hospitals. These efforts were short-lived, however. During the years 1899-1900, the home temples were experiencing financial difficulties of their own due to the withdrawal of government support from Buddhism in favor of State Shintō,(6) and they in turn reduced or cut off funds for activities that did not directly benefit Japanese citizens. In addition to such profitable endeavors as performing funerals, the Japanese sects also began directly appealing to the wealthy Japanese citizenry already in Taiwan for financial support, and increasingly neglected the Chinese population.(7)



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     Meanwhile, the government was taking action of its own within the religious world. As part of an effort to consolidate political power and limit the influence exerted by such extragovernmental bodies as temples, the viceregal authorities quickly expropriated temple land and moved to limit the economic and military functions of places such as Taipei's Longshan Temple. As Prof. Lin explains:

Under the Japanese, [the temples'] lands were declared either "unowned" or "ownership unclear," and confiscated for public use. Thus, [the temples'] were thrown back into dependence on religious services [foshi 佛事] or seeking contributions. So temples were forced to collude with spirit channelers [Taiwanese: dangki 童乩] sandboard readers, dharma masters [fashi 法師], hongyi 紅姨 and that ilk to make a living by inciting the masses with superstitious beliefs. Other temples simply became commercialized. So if there are still temples that prey on popular superstitions, or are commercialized in Taiwan today, it is a legacy of the Japanese colonial period.(8)

We may not agree with Prof. Lin's implication that temples were more pure in their religious practice and free of superstition and commercialism in the Qing period, but it is clear that any loss of land revenues was a serious blow and replacing the lost income required quick and creative solutions.

     As time went on and the situation settled down more and more, other sects and schools of Japanese Buddhism sent monks in to open up the new



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territory. Among these were the Shinshū Kibe Sect 真宗木邊派,(9) the Rinzai School of Zen 臨濟宗, the Jōdo School's Seizan Sect 淨土宗西山派,(10) the Nichiren School 日蓮宗, the Tendai School 天台宗, the Hokke School 法華派,(11) and the Kegon School 華嚴宗. The total number of Buddhist groups represented eventually rose to eight schools and twelve sects, and many of the members of these groups came to Taiwan determined to carry out missionary and educational activities among the Chinese, financial difficulties notwithstanding.(12)

     As one might expect, the earliest offices of these groups were not full temples as such, but simply "branch offices" [shutchōjō 出張所] or "branch temples" [betsuin 別院] organized and run under the direct supervision of the head temple [honzan 本山] in Japan. Such establishments were usually referred to within each school or sect as a "missionary station" [fukyōjo 布教所]. In the event that its operations grew large enough to warrant the establishment of a full temple, then the monks in charge would apply to their home temples for both concurrence and whatever financial backing was available, and to the local viceregal authorities



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for their permission as well.(13)

     What was the rate at which such temples were constructed? A Japanese government survey of 1941 reveals the following information:


1. The Tendai School
  Temples : 1      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 1
        Chinese : 0
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 0
        Chinese : 0
  Devotees :   Japanese : 138
        Chinese : 0
        Korean : 0
2. The Shingon School
  Temples : 4      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 4
        Chinese : 0
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 4
        Chinese : 1
  Devotees :   Japanese : 7,487
        Chinese : 1,040
        Korean : 21
3. The Jōdo (Pure Land) School
  Temples : 6      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 6
        Chinese : 0
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 9
        Chinese : 2
  Devotees :   Japanese : 7,897
        Chinese : 1,764
        Korean : 109



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4. The Jōdo School Seizan Sect
  Temples : 1      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 1
        Chinese : 0
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 1
        Chinese : 2
  Devotees :   Japanese : 1,500
        Chinese : 150
        Korean : 0
5. The Rinzai School
  Temples : 15      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 9
        Chinese : 5
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 16
        Chinese : 43
  Devotees :   Japanese : 7,913
        Chinese : 9,334
        Korean : 0
6 The Sōtō School
  Temples : 14      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 9
        Chinese : 5
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 11
        Chinese : 35
  Devotees :   Japanese : 9,578
        Chinese : 10,247
        Korean : 1
7. The Shinshū Honganji Sect
  Temples : 16      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 15
        Chinese : 0
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 17
        Chinese : 15
  Devotees :   Japanese : 21,204
        Chinese : 5,184
        Korean : 22



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8. The Shinshū Ōtani Sect
  Temples : 5      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 5
        Chinese : 0
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 16
        Chinese : 21
  Devotees :   Japanese : 9,487
        Chinese : 369
        Korean : 0
9. The Nichiren School
  Temples : 3      
  Abbots :   Japanese : 3
        Chinese : 0
  Missionaries :   Japanese : 5
        Chinese : 3
  Devotees :   Japanese : 2,543
        Chinese : 315
        Korean : 0



     As is readily apparent, the Sōtō and Rinzai Schools of Zen were by far the most active. They deployed the greatest number of missionaries, and they were the only schools whose native Chinese missionaries outnumbered the Japanese missionaries (with the exception of the tiny Seizan Sect, with two Chinese and one Japanese missionaries). However, the Shinshū Honganji Sect was the most numerous in terms of the devotees it had picked up by 1941.(14) But it must be borne in mind that these are all very small numbers indeed. The grand total of all the devotees of Japanese Buddhism after almost fifty years of proselytizing comes only to 96,205, of whom only 28,303 are Chinese. This is at a time when



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the population of the island was about six million.(15)

     Who were the Chinese who involved themselves with Japanese Buddhism? For the most part they were people who for various reasons needed good relations with the government. Chen Lingrong states that most of them were from the wealthier classes of society, presumably because the exigencies of their business enterprises put them in official contact with government agencies more often than the average citizen. They might patronize Japanese Buddhist temples in order to maintain closer personal ties with the officials whose good will they needed. Others joined officially-sponsored religious associations to avoid the charge of using religion as a cover for seditious activities, as we shall see in the next chapter. Finally, there were some very highly-placed Chinese monks who needed a good relationship with the government in order for their temples to thrive and develop, and we shall look at the careers of four of the most important of these monks next.



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     A. Overview. Occasionally, in looking over materials on Buddhism in Taiwan issued by the Taiwan Buddhist establishment, one sees reference to the "Four Great Ancestral Daochang" [si da zushi daochang 四大祖師道場] of Taiwan.(16) These consist of the following four temples: (1) the Lingquan Chan Temple [Lingquan Chansi 靈泉禪寺] in Keelung, (2) the Fayun Chan Temple [fayun chansi 法雲禪寺] in Miaoli County, (3) the Chaofeng Temple [Chaofeng Si 超峰寺] in Kaohsiung County, and (4) the Lingyun Chan Temple [Lingyun Chansi 凌雲禪寺] on Guanyin Mountain in Taipei County.(17) What is the



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significance of these four places?

     Briefly put, they represent the arrival in Taiwan of the lineages of Chinese Buddhism that would predominate during the Japanese occupation, as well as the beginning of monastic ordinations in Taiwan. The reader will recall that. during the Qing dynasty period, Taiwan had no place for the conferral of the full monastic precepts, and that if anyone wanted to receive full ordination, they had to travel to the mainland at their own expense. The monks who founded or revived these four temples rectified this situation. They not only received valid full ordinations on the mainland, they also began taking on disciples and conferring the precepts in Taiwan. Thus they created large "tonsure families" whose personal loyalty would be to them, and whose members usually remained with them to receive the full ordination at their hands. They would then go out and either assume the abbotship of other temples or found new ones of their own, and the result was the founding of the four major dharma lineages [fapai 法派] in Taiwan.(18)

     Holmes Welch gave a report on the significance of these relationships based on his interviews with Chinese monks during the early 1960s, and it is worth quoting him at length so that the reader will become familiar with the pattern and feeling of the "tonsure family."



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...[T]hrough tonsure a monk entered a "family." The head of the "family" was his "father-master" [shi fu 師父] or his "grandfather-master" [shi gong 師公]. The rest of the family included members of various generations, who were called "older-brother-masters" and "younger-brother-masters [shi xiong 師兄, shidi 師弟], "uncle-masters" [shi bo 師伯, shi shu 師叔], "nephew-disciples" [tu zhi 徒姪], "grandson-disciples" [tu sun 徒孫], and so on. Before any of these terms the word "tonsure" [tidu 剃度] would be prefixed to show that this, rather than ordination or transmission of the dharma, was the basis of the kinship in question.

     The tonsure family was a private organism within the public body of the sangha. Just as there was supposed to be a dear distinction between public and the private in lay life, so monks attempted to keep the "family matters" of the private temple separate from the public operation of large monasteries. This was one reason for the rule that disciples could have their heads shaved and receive their training only at private hereditary temples. ...[I]f a large public monastery allowed tonsure families to take root there, the selection of abbots and officers would come to depend increasingly on kinship and less and less on qualifications to serve. ...

     Tonsure was not the only basis for religious kinship. The elders who presided at a monk's ordination were considered his "ordination masters" [jie shifu 戒師父] and his fellow ordinees were his "ordination brothers" [jie xiongdi 戒兄弟]. Later in his career. he might enter into a series of master-disciple relationships with those from whom he received the dharma. Each time he did so, he acquired a new set of dharma relatives. But, except where the dharma involved the. right to an abbotship, both ordination and dharma types of kinship were largely nominal.(19)

While this quotation explains the dose-knit relationships engendered by receiving the tonsure and entering the Buddhist sangha at the hands of a particular master, it also opens another problem. If, as Welch says, the Chinese system was strict about keeping "tonsure family" relationships out of the process of conferring and receiving full ordination, to the extent that tonsure and ordination had to be done



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at different temples, then why did these four temples in Taiwan allow their abbots to perform both functions?

     The answer to this lies in the fact that each of them received their ordination at the Yongquan Temple 湧泉寺 in Fuzhou, across the straits in Fujian province. According to Welch (who refers to this temple in his works as Ku Shan [Gushan 鼓山] after the mountain upon which it sits), this temple was unique in ignoring this rule; at this temple, a prospective ordinand could indeed receive both tonsure and full ordination in the same place from the same master.(20) This was the model that these four monks, along with all the others who went to the mainland to receive the precepts, brought with them to Taiwan, where it subsequently became the norm. Thus, we can see that these four major temples were the focal points of the four major "families" within Taiwan Buddhism. It is thus important to examine them more closely.

     B. Ven. Shanhui 善慧法師 (1881-1945) and the Lingquan ("Spirit Spring") Temple Lineage.(21) Ven. Shanhui was a native of the Keelung area of northern Taiwan. He was born in 1881, and his lay name was Jiang Qingjun 江清俊.(22) He spent his earliest childhood during a period of constant turmoil, one that lasted until the Japanese pacified the island shortly after 1895. At the age of nine he



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entered into a privately-run school [sishu 私塾] and managed to keep up his studies for a number of years. In 1896, at the age of fifteen, he went with his mother to take refuge in the Longhua sect of zhaijiao. and received the religious-name Pujie 普傑. According to Jiang Canteng, this was probably their only real option at the time for participation in religious activities. There were no nuns in Taiwan by this time, as we have seen, and only the most minimal presence of orthodox Buddhist monks.

     Shanhui may well have spent the rest of his life as a follower of zhaijiao had it not been for the arrival of two missionary monks from Fujian Province in 1900, named Shanzhi 善智法師 and Miaomi 妙密法師. It is not clear how they got permission to cross over what was then the border between China and Japan; Jiang speculates that they had some help from local Chinese Buddhists, and the fact that Japan saw Buddhism as a bridge between them and their new subjects may also have been a factor. Be that as it may, the two came to Keelung, which by this time had eclipsed Tamsui as the most important port city in the north, and lodged in a building behind a Taoist temple. With this temple as their provisional base of operations, they began lecturing on the sutras, preaching, and holding dharma-meetings for averting natural calamities, all in very popular and accessible language. As a result, they attracted bigger and bigger audiences, among whom was young Qingjun.

     They quickly noticed that this was a young man of good education, a quick mind, and sincere religious feeling, and they took special interest in his



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religious training. Under their influence, he gradually made up his mind to leave home and become an orthodox Buddhist monk. However, his mother objected strenuously because of her desire that he remain with her in zhaijiao. In spite of this, his mind was made up, and so, under the pretext of going to do some sightseeing, he accompanied Shanzhi back. to Fujian and to the temple of Shanzhi's own master Jingfeng 景峰法師 in 1902. (Ven. Miaomi had passed away in Taiwan prior to their departure.) This was the Yongquan Temple on Gushan in Fuzhou, and Shanhui resided there for a total of six months, during which time he received both the tonsure and full ordination. When he and Shan2hi returned to Taiwan, his mother was very upset, but, as Mr. Jiang notes, "once raw rice is boiled, then it is cooked and there's nothing you can do about it."

     Upon landing in Keelung once again, the two monks, now tonsure "brothers" under the same "master-father," set to work propagating the dharma. One of the first projects that they decided to undertake was the founding of a temple in Keelung to use as a base of operations in educating local clergy. Shanzhi, as the elder brother, took on the responsibility of working among the people to raise the funds and obtain the land. Shanhui looked after the day-to-day construction.

     The first job was to find a plot of land. and this they obtained from a Mr. Lin Laifa 林來發, who donated one jia of land from his tea plantation, located on Yuemei (Moonbrow) Mountain 月眉山. In recounting this, Jiang Canteng asks the reader to understand what a sacrifice this was. Taiwan's economy was very



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poor, especially in terms of foreign reserves. About the only sources of revenue from export were tea, camphor, and sugar, all grown on such plantations. Thus, the loss of even this small amount of land was a tremendous sacrifice.(23) Furthermore, Mr. Jiang believes we can see from this the dependence of successful Buddhist institutions on the commercial as well as the governmental class, who in turn increasingly patronized "orthodox" Buddhism to the exclusion of zhaijiao and its institutions.

     One other difficulty that Shanzhi and Shanhui had to overcome in siting their temple arose from military considerations. The land that Mr. Lin gave them sits in a pass in the ring of mountains that surrounds Taipei and is strategically crucial in the city's defenses. At that time, one needed the permission of the Japanese authorities just to photograph the area, and so the reader may imagine what difficulties there were in obtaining permission to build a temple there! They first submitted their application in 1903, and in the temple records, it is noted that Shanzhi died in 1906 "without having completed that business."

     Mr. Jiang is of the opinion that Shanzhi's death actually helped speed up the application process, because it left Shanhui, a native son of Keelung, free to pursue the application on his own. He quickly won the support of several local officials, and the Great Hall was finally completed in 1908. A delegate from the Yongquan Temple in Fujian, Ven. Xingjin 性進法師, came to conduct the opening ceremony for the temple and to install Shanhui as abbot, and it was he who



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decided upon the name of the temple, based upon the mountain's natural topography and abundant water supply.

     Of course, one may not presume that Shanhui's background as a Keelung native aided his efforts to get permission for building the temple from Japanese officials. They had their own reasons for wanting a large temple in Keelung. For one thing, Keelung was now the major port city and point of entry for visiting Japanese dignitaries, and the location of the Lingquan Chan Temple made it perfect for lodging Japanese Buddhist VIPs. Also, as Holmes Welch reminds us, the Japanese were very interested in cultivating Buddhist contacts with the Chinese as a means of preparing the ground for their eventual takeover of the rest of China.(24) Thus, we see that Shanhui was able to build on a base of three very important kinds of support: 1) the Japanese authorities who trusted him to be loyal and needed him as a bridge to the mainland, 2) the Chinese authorities, who liked him because he was a local citizen known to them, and because their Japanese supervisors trusted him, and 3) the monied class of Chinese merchants and industrialists who needed a religious outlet that would not offend the Japanese authorities.

     Thus, Shanhui found himself in a web of obligations that extended both to mainland China and to Japan. On the one hand, he became the channel by which the Yongquan Temple lineage entered into Taiwan from Fujian province. On the



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other hand, immediately upon his installation as abbot of the Lingquan Chan Temple, he was adopted into the Sōtō Zen lineage, and a representative of the Sōtōshū attended the ceremony. 1908 was still early in the Japanese period, and the Sōtō line was still trying to establish its own mission in Taiwan. They considered Keelung a key mission area, but they had not yet been able to raise the money needed to build a proper temple of their own. Thus, it was in their interest to claim Shanhui as a member of their lineage in order to get a foothold in his temple for use as a future base of operations.

     With all this support, the temple grew rapidly. The year after its opening, Shanhui applied for permission to expand its property, and some new buildings were completed by 1910. This time, over 1200 people from the spheres of government, commerce, industry, and religion attended the opening celebration. That same year, on the occasion of the Buddha's birthday in the fourth lunar month, Shanhui held the first transmission of lay precepts ever given in Taiwan.(25) Over thirty people took the precepts, laying a foundation for the development of modern. Buddhism on the island. Shanhui was not yet thirty years old at the time.

     With his temple firmly established, Shanhui put his energy into helping build Buddhist organizations on the island, as we shall see when we discuss that part of this history in the next chapter. At other times he took care to keep his contacts fresh with both mainland China and Japan, as well as within Taiwan.



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For example, in 1911 he and a disciple went to the mainland and made a grand four of Buddhist sites in Shanghai, Tiantong, Hangzhou, and Putuo Island. He also visited every temple and zhaijiao hall in Taiwan, working to build relationships for future cooperative ventures. He made many trips to Japan throughout the rest of his life. In 1912 he brought a copy of the Tripitaka back to Taiwan. Also, since the leadership of the Sōtō order rotated every year, he was obliged to go to the main Sōtō temple annually to pay his respects to the new head.

     Through Shanhui's efforts. Buddhism in Taiwan was able to remain informed about currents of thought on the mainland. In 1931, he prevailed upon Ven. Yuanying 圓瑛法師, the president of the BAROC, to come and spend two weeks in Taiwan lecturing on the sutras. In 1917 he invited no less a personage than the Ven. Taixu 太虛法師 himself to come and deliver a series of lectures, which Shanhui translated into Hokkien for him. The two then embarked on a long tour together around Taiwan, after which Shanhui accompanied Taixu on a tour of Japan. The two men found each other's company congenial, especially because they shared similar views on monastic education. Shanhui journeyed once to Lushan in Jiangxi province to visit Taixu during his time there in the early 1920s. In 1925, when Taixu organized the first East Asian Buddhist Conference in Tokyo, Shanhui was one of three representatives from Taiwan to attend, delivering a short talk in which he showed how the monastic system fulfilled the Marxist ideal of a classless society without resorting to violence and thus could



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help bring about world peace.(26)

     However, it was in his educational efforts that he had the most lasting effect. After bringing back the Tripitaka, he inaugurated a short course of lectures on the sutras and Buddhist doctrine given by monks from both Japan and the mainland and attended by over forty people. This was the first time a temple had ever held a large-scale educational conference in Taiwan, and Shanhui was very dear about its purpose: "To nurture talent for spreading the dharma, and to instill a spirit of respect for the emperor and reverence for the Buddha in all people." From this the reader may see why, when other Buddhists and the devotees of zhaijiao were scrambling for refuge after the Xilai Hermitage Incident of 1915 (to which we will come presently), Shanhui was in Tokyo receiving a gold medal from the Taishō emperor.

     In his work with the Sōtō organization in Taiwan, Shanhui became close with the fifth Missioner General, Ōishi Kendō. Ōishi later returned as the seventh Missioner General, and expended great efforts in founding a Sōtō-run high school in Taipei in order to augment the number of Japanese-speaking scholars in Taiwan for the benefit of the government.(27) The school was to be called the "Taiwan Buddhist Middle School" [Taiwan Bukkyō Chūgakurin]. During this period of organizing (1913-1920), he again approached his old friend Shanhui about taking



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the post of dean. of studies. Shanhui accepted, and held this position, from its first year when it took in 25 students for its three-year curriculum, to 1935 when it adopted a full five-year curriculum, to 1937 when it split into a men's and women's campus. The school still exists, although under a different name and governing agency, in the Shihlin district of Taipei.

     Shanhui continued in this vein for the rest of his life, and remained active in organizing Buddhist associations, education, and as abbot of the Lingquan Chan Temple. One of his disciples, Ven. Derong 德融法師, was the first Taiwan cleric to go to Japan for study, and he later worked at the Taiwan Buddhist Middle School as a teacher, encouraging many of its graduates to follow his example and study in Japan. He later succeeded Shanhui as abbot of the Lingquan Chan Temple.(28) Shanhui himself died in 1945, the year Taiwan was returned to Chinese rule. His entire monastic career was lived within the framework of the Japanese occupation.

     Mr. Jiang states that, because of Shanhui's willingness to collaborate with the Japanese, much of what he accomplished came to nothing after Retrocession [guangfu 光復] and the subsequent backlash against Japanese influence. The Lingquan Chan Temple went into a decline with the loss of official support; the Taiwan Buddhist Middle School changed hands and lost its religious character; all the associations he helped organize evaporated. However, during his life, he gave the tonsure to many disciples, who spread out ail over Taiwan and founded



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temples of their own; the 1992 Gazetteer lists 47 of these temples in all, the majority of which were founded by clergy who stand in the second generation after Shanhui.(29) Therefore, he is still important as the channel through which a great number of monks, nuns, and temples trace their lineage back to the Yongquan Temple in Fujian, and thus he is still revered as a patriarch in the "family tree."

     C. Ven. Benyuan 本圓法師 (1883-1946) and the Lingyun ("Soaring Clouds") Temple Lineage. Like Shanhui, the Ven. Benyuan was a native of Keelung who received the tonsure and the full precepts at the Yongquan Temple in Fujian, returned to Taiwan and then spent the remainder of his monastic career working under the Japanese viceregal government. He was born in 1883 to a family named Chen ¨H and, also like Shanhui, received a goad basic education in the classics of Chinese literature. Somewhere during his early childhood he developed enough interest in Buddhism to take a monk named Ven. Yuanjing 元精法師 as his master and formally enter into Buddhism. This was in 1897, when he was fourteen years old. After studying Buddhism at Yuanjing's temple for a few years, he departed for the mainland, going to the Yongquan Temple in Fujian for ordination. We should not say "also going" or "following in Shanhui's footsteps," because Benyuan went there in 1900, a full two years before Shanhui's departure. However, Benyuan remained at the Yongquan Temple eleven years, returning only at the request of the Ven. Baohai 寶海法師, who was trying to found a new



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temple in northern. Taiwan. Thus, he returned to Taiwan nine years after Shanhui.

     At this point, it is necessary to take a step back and give an account of Ven. Baohai and his efforts to build a temple in northern Taiwan. Baohai was a native of Sanchung 三重 (now a suburb of Taipei) whose lay name was Lin Huoyan 林火炎. After taking formal refuge in Buddhism in 1896, he also traveled to the Yongquan Temple for full ordination, returning to Taiwan in 1900, the year that Benyuan departed. He set up a temple of sorts in his own home, and began teaching and preaching, and looking for a way to build a proper daochang. His chance finally came in 1909, when he received word that the Liu 劉 clan, a wealthy agricultural and commercial family in Taipei, had recently lost their grandfather, and wished to do something on a grand scale to gain religious merit on his behalf. Baohai went to see them. and convinced them to fund and build the temple of which he had been dreaming for nine years.

     The Liu family's two senior brothers set aside the money, and chose a committee of three to scout out a suitable place for the new temple. By November of 1910, they had located a site on Guanyin Mountain, in the modern Wugu 五股 area of Taipei County.(30) However, Baohai's health was deteriorating rapidly, and he lacked the energy to pursue the project on his own. He therefore got in touch with Benyuan at the Yongquan Temple in Fujian, and asked him to return and help out. Upon Baohai's death, Benyuan took over as abbot of the new temple.(31)



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     This turn of events well suited Benyuan's personal ambitions. As Mr. Jiang points out, he had been on the mainland for a long time, and this had had two effects on his thought and career. In the first place, he was in Fujian in the years leading up to the Wuchang incident in 1911, when the Manchu government fell and the Republic of China came into being. He was attentive to the events going on around him and the political atmosphere in which he lived, and he was just as conversant in modern currents of thought as he was in matters of temple decorum. By the time he returned to Taiwan, he had already developed a number of his own ideas about what he wanted to do and the sort of temple and connections he needed in order to do it.

     On the other hand, by staying so long on the mainland, he lost valuable time as Shanhui built up his own sphere of influence in Taiwan. The reader should remember that Shanhui only stayed on the mainland for six months, and returned in 1902. By 1908 the Lingquan Chan Temple was already completed, and rapidly rose in eminence so that by the time Benyuan returned in 1910, it was already the premier Buddhist temple in the Keelung area. Had Benyuan remained in Keelung, his own home town, he would have had a difficult time garnering support for his own efforts, as all the monied people and officials who were disposed towards Buddhism had already cast their lot with Shanhui. Thus, when asked to take over the founding of a new temple in another site altogether,



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he felt it was his best opportunity for remaining outside Shanhui's circle and building his own domain.

     Even before Baohai passed away, Benyuan decided that the temple as originally planned was going to be unsuitable for the kinds of things he had in mind. The design was too traditional and too steeped in popular superstitions for his own modernist outlook, and the scale was too small. He wanted something with a more spacious feeling, similar to the temples he had visited and lived in on the mainland.(32) Therefore, almost as soon as the Lingyun Chan Temple was completed, he met with Baohai and the Liu clan to talk about renovating it. He also proposed and passed several reforms to steer the life of the temple away from the Japanese model and more towards the Chinese model. He forbade the resident clergy to have wives or eat meat, among other reforms.

     His rebuilding project proceeded in two stages. The first lasted six months from August of 1914 to February of 1915, and the second from May of 1918 to January of 1920. The first phase of reconstruction and expansion cost more than the original construction, and the second phase cost even more than that, but Benyuan was determined that the Lingyun Chan Temple was not going to be like the average Taiwan temple(33) With each successive phase of construction, it became a more purely Buddhist temple.

     Benyuan's efforts to distance himself from Shanhui went beyond mere



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physical relocation. Shanhui had submitted his temple and its operations to the Sōtō school of Zen Buddhism; therefore, Benyuan aligned himself with the Rinzai school 臨濟宗. Even while the Lingyun Chan Temple was under renovation, Benyuan collaborated with the Rinzai missionary Nagatani Jien 長谷慈圓 in organizational and educational activities. With Benyuan's help, the Rinzai school set up the "Taiwan Friends of the Buddha Way Association" [Taiwan Fojiao Daoyou Hui 台灣佛教道友會] and helped organize and administer the Chinnan Academy [Chinnan Gakurin 鎮南學林]. In 1920, he formally submitted his temple and its organizations to the Rinzai school's administrative jurisdiction.

     Although moving out of Keelung had put Benyuan in a position to build his own empire, it remains the case that he did not select the actual site of the Lingyun Chan Temple, and so he still had to solve some problems in order to adjust the facilities to his activities and goals. He wanted a temple that would be attractive to large numbers of people from all over Taiwan, but the location on Guanyin Mountain was fairly inaccessible. Therefore, although the Lingyun Chan. Temple complex was largely finished and functional at the end of the second phase of reconstruction, Benyuan continued to add buildings all the way up until 1933. He built new guest quarters, reception rooms, terraces for gazing at the moon, refectories, and side chapels one after the other. He also put in a road so that visitors could reach the temple by car. In this way he hoped to have a facility that would lure people with its grand scale and excellent vista over the Taipei basin and the sea.



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     These efforts would bring sightseers to the temple, but sightseers only donate money once and then go home; they do not constitute a dependable source of long-range support So Benyuan also devised ways to give people a feeling of lasting connection with the temple to inspire return visits and regular support. He continued cultivating official contacts for the rest of his life. Also, like Shanhui, he began early administering Refuges and precepts at the temple, an activity that instills in its participants a sense of ongoing commitment and involvement in the life of the temple.(34) He held the first large-scale precepts ceremony in the Lingyun Temple on November II, 1923, and, although the ordination of the monks and nuns only lasted one week (today it can last three months), over 700 people came for both lay and monastic ordinations. The roster of officials in attendance was a veritable Who's Who of Taiwan Buddhism at that time. Benyuan himself was the preceptor, Shanhui acted as daojie master 導戒師,(35) and the "catechist" [Welch's translation for jiaoshoushi 教授師] was none other than Ven. Yuanying 圓瑛法師, like Benyuan and Shanhui an ordinand of the Yongquan Temple who in later years would be preoccupied as the president of the Buddhist Association of the Republic of China with staving off government



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confiscation of temple properties back on the mainland. The list of ordaining masters also included other representatives of the Yongquan Temple and Japanese Buddhism, showing that Benyuan, like Shanhui, also stood in the nexus of Taiwanese, Japanese, and mainland Buddhist relations.

     Concerning Benyuan's activities in helping the Buddhists and government officials of Taiwan set up religious organizations, more will be said below. Like Shanhui, Benyuan. once he had established himself as a major figure in Taiwan Buddhist circles, continued in this vein for the remainder of his life. When he died in 1946, the abbacy passed to the Ven. Juejing 覺淨法師. Juejing was another Taiwanese who had received ordination at the Yongquan Temple during Benyuan's stay there and had returned with him to Taiwan and worked with him from then on. Besides Juejing, Benyuan left behind a number of other capable and devoted disciples, and a network of temples that either they or Benyuan himself had founded, establishing the Lingyun Chan Temple as the second of the "Four Great Ancestral Daochang" of Taiwan.

     However, like the Lingquan Chan Temple in Keelung, this temple went into a decline with the end of Japanese rule in 1945. The massive loss of financial support meant that Juejing was unable to do anything beyond minor repairs and routine maintenance, and by the time he died in 1963, the temple was in a sad state of disrepair. The third abbot, Zhiding 智定法師, had more luck. Taiwan's economic development began accelerating in the mid 1970s, and he was able to raise two million New Taiwan Dollars (about US$50,000 at that time) toward



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renovation, putting the Lingyun Chan Temple on a firmer footing. Today it is a solid and active monastery, although it never recovered the preeminence it enjoyed during the Japanese period.(36)

     D. Ven. Jueli 覺力法師 (1881-1933), Ven. Miaoguo 妙果法師 (1884-1964), and the Fayun ("Dharma Cloud") Chan Temple Lineage. Of all the "eminent monks and nuns" whose lives form the substance of this chapter, Ven. Jueli is unique in that he is the only one who is not a native of the island. Also, although this temple came into being and prospered primarily through his efforts, it still would not have ever seen the light of day without the efforts of Jueli's first and most eminent Taiwan disciple, Ven. Miaoguo.(37)

     Although Ven. Jueli was not born on Taiwan, his birthplace lay not too far away. He was born the first and only son to a family surnamed Lin on the small island of Gubo 鼓波 ("Drumwave") in Xiamen 夏門 (or Amoy), Fujian province. As to his date of birth, sources vary between 1878 and 1881, but the editors of his Annals argue for the latter as according more firmly with his known chronology.(38) His family was reasonably well-to-do, and supported themselves by means of a saltworks in their living compound. Their son, whom they named Lin Jinshi 林



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金獅, was able to go to school throughout his childhood.(39) He was an exceptionally bright arid talented child, with dear, penetrating eyes.(40)

     However, in. 1896, when he was sixteen years old, he received word one day just as his class was dismissed that one of his schoolmates had suddenly sickened and died. He was instantly filled with repugnance for life's transitoriness, and decided then and there to run away to seek ordination. He left a note in his inkwell instructing his father not to come looking for him, and straightway made for the Yongquan Temple in Fuzhou. When he got to Gushan, the site of the temple, he met a monk in the street and, informing him of his wish, asked him to conduct him to the abbot. The monk asked "Do you really wish to leave the householder's life?", and the boy replied, "Yes!" So the monk took him to see Ven. Wanshan 萬善法師, who accepted him as a disciple and tonsured him shortly thereafter, giving him the clerical name of Jueli ("Power of Enlightenment"). However, the abbot took care to notify the family of this new arrival, and they came quickly to plead for their son to return. Jueli was adamant in his resolve, and turned a deaf ear on their protests that now they would have no one to care for the family's ancestral cult. Having failed to persuade him to come home, they returned to Xiamen and adopted another boy into the family.

     As was the custom at the Yongquan Temple, Jueli received the full monastic precepts there later the same year, having also taken the temple's prior [jianyuan 監院] Ven. Benzhong 本忠法師 as his master. He spent the next six years



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studying vinaya with Benzhong, and in 1901, accompanied his master on a tour of the southeast Asian islands.(41) Four years later, he undertook a trip on his own to China's heartland and then to Japan in order to see for himself the state of Buddhism in various places. During this trip he passed through Taiwan (by then already part of Japan) and stayed for a time at the Lingquan Chan Temple founded by Ven. Shanhui.(42) After completing his tour, he returned to the Yongquan Temple and accepted an appointment as senior instructor in the meditation hall [shouzuo 首座].(43) The following year abbot Wanshan promoted him to prior.(44)

     During Jueli's tenure as prior, he received a visit from a young man named Ye Aming 葉阿銘, a native of Taoyuan county, Taiwan. Born in 1884, he was the fourth of five sons and had proved himself very adept at traditional Confucian studies. His father had died when he was thirteen years old, and three brothers followed in quick succession. Badly shaken by these events, he turned to vegetarianism and began to think about seeking ordination. At this point, the various sources on Miaoguo's life become confused, and the information they



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present open to question. Most, based on the records of the Annals themselves, say that he went to the Zhaiming Temple 齋明寺 in 1901 to take the Three Refuges.(45) It is possible that this Zhaiming Temple was a zhaijiao hall: its name contains the word zhai 齋, although it uses the word "temple" [si 寺] instead of the more characteristic "hall" [tang 堂]. Furthermore, in the entry for 1911, the Annals portray Ye Aming as meeting Jueli for the first time at the Yongquan Temple rather than in Taiwan, and say that at the time, he was a member of the Longhua Sect with the high rank of taikong 太空. Thus, it is likely that Ye Aming, the future Ven. Miaoguo, spent a few years as a zhaiyou before traveling to Fuzhou to seek ordination at the Yongquan Temple.

     Whatever the truth of the matter, it is dear that the two men felt a sense of intertwined fate from the beginning. In relating their first meeting at the Yongquan Temple in 1911, the Annals say that Miaoguo questioned Jueli closely for three days and nights without taking time out for sleep or rest, and leaving his quarters only to attend chanting services. In the end, Miaoguo asked Jueli, only three years his senior, to take him as a disciple, which Jueli did. Later that year, Miaoguo received the full monastic precepts at the temple.(46) Shortly thereafter, he received word that his mother had fallen ill and he was compelled to return to Taiwan.(47) Upon his return, he settled in the Lingyun Chan Temple, where he



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assumed the post of temple treasurer [fusi 副寺].(48)

     Not long after his return, however, he began holding discussions with prominent laymen from the Miaoli area (then a part of Hsinchu gun 新竹郡) about the possibility- of building a new temple there. They chose a site and a name: the Fayun Chan Temple 法雲禪寺. Once the construction work was underway, Miaoguo crossed the straits to Fujian once again in order to invite Jueli to return to Taiwan and be the new temple's founding abbot. Jueli consented, but Wanshan, his abbot, disapproved, and the editors of the Annals relate the following anecdote: When Jueli asked Wanshan for permission to return to Taiwan permanently, Wanshan refused, saying, 'Taiwan is too superficial. If you go, you will surely end up returning to lay life." Then Wanshan picked up a short iron staff [tiechi 鐵尺] and made as if he were going to kill Jueli, thinking that it would be more merciful to end his life then and there and save him the bad karma that would result from disrobing. Jueli, however, had some skill in martial arts, and especially the art of qinggong 輕功,(49) and he jumped out of the way. Not only did he dodge the blow, he also had a small enlightenment.(50) His fellow-disciples then helped him to escape from the monastery, packing his bags for him and carrying them down to the bottom of the mountain where he picked them up on his way out.



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     Arriving in Miaoli, Jueli took over supervision of the construction, and he relied on Miaoguo not only as a bridge to the local gentry, but as an interpreter as well. Jueli, a native of Fujian, spoke Hokkien, but Miaoli is situated in an area with a predominantly Hakka population, and so he needed Miaoguo to help him overcome the language barrier. It was also an area of intense warfare between the ethnic Chinese and the aborigines, and the Annals state that Jueli was ultimately instrumental in creating a lasting peace between these two sides. This was partly due to his accomplishments in meditation, which gave him the power to pacify belligerence, but also because the bell which rang every day for Morning Devotions gave the aborigines such headaches that they could no longer think of killing the Chinese.(51) The Great Shrine Hall was formally inaugurated on November 17th, 1914.

     From this point until his death in 1933, Jueli was active in two primary areas: clerical education, and transmitting the precepts. As to the first, he cooperated with Ven. Shanhui and Ven. Xinyuan in founding the Taiwan Buddhist Middle School [Taiwan Bukkyō Chūgakurin 台灣佛教中學林] in Taipei on land provided by Ōishi Kendō of the Sōtōshū mission to Taiwan.(52) In 1922 he was named a missionary for the Sōtōshū, an impressive accomplishment for a monk who could not speak Japanese. This appointment was a mixed blessing for him, however;



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shortly after accepting it he also received an invitation from his two masters at the Yongquan Temple, Wanshan and Benzhong, to return as abbot. After giving the matter much thought, he decided to remain in Taiwan and risk appearing unfilial to his masters. In his autobiographical statement, he says, "There was no way for me to be in two places at once, and so I decided to concentrate my efforts on the Fayun Chan Temple and the revival of Buddhism in Taiwan.(53)

     Taking a special concern for the education of young monks, he opened the Fayun Buddhist Study Society [Fayun Foxueshe 法雲佛學社] at the temple in 1928, with an initial enrollment of about sixty.(54) He put Ven. Zhenchang 真常法師, recently returned from study on the mainland, in charge of its operations. One of his followers, Ven. Chanhui 禪慧, explains that this enterprise was significant because it represented the first wave of real monastic education in Taiwan. Even though both the Taiwan Bukkyō Chūgakurin and the Chinnan Gakurin at the Rinzai Zen Temple preceded it, they presented more of a Japanese-style, secularized education. The Fayun Foxueshe's program of studies, on the other hand, was aimed solely at clerical education, and conducted in a purely traditional Chinese style. Its purpose was to raise up the next generation of clergy and equip them to spread the teachings.(55)

     Jueli took a special interest in the education of nuns, which, says Ven. Chanhui, shows that he foresaw how important nuns would be in the future of



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Buddhism in Taiwan.(56) His first effort in this direction was a special six-month course of lectures that he delivered at the Yishan Temple 一善寺 near Hsinchu. Later that year, having seen how uneducated the nuns of Taiwan were and sensing a need for an ongoing institution, he established the Fayun Female Seminary [Fayun Nüzhong Yanjiuyuan 法雲女眾研究院] on the grounds of the Fayun Chan Temple itself, with an initial enrollment of eleven nuns.(57)

     Interestingly, this is the only area of his mission in which he encountered resistance. Ven. Chanhui explains that Taiwan society at that time still held to the feudal notion that "A woman without education is virtuous" [Nüzi wu cai bian shi de 女子無才便是德].(58) Thus some local citizens mounted a campaign against him and some even began spreading slanderous stories about him, but he persevered, coming in to lecture the nuns personally on a regular basis. Later, the nuns collated their notes from his lectures, and this became the textbook for the seminary.(59)

     Maintaining contact with eminent monks on the mainland and encouraging exchanges of students also formed part of his educational endeavors. In 1923 he provided funds to send two of his disciples, Miaoji 妙吉法師 and Zhenchang, to
study on the mainland, the first at Taixu's Wuchang Buddhist Seminary, the latter at two schools in Nanjing. When Miaoji returned, Jueli asked him to take



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over editorial duties at his "Light of Asia" [Yaguang 亞光] magazine.(60) in 1924, when Ven. Yuanying came to Taiwan at the invitation of Shanhui, Jueli invited him to come to the Fayun Chan Temple, where he delivered a two-week course of lectures on the Surangama Sūtra.(61)

     He also traveled abroad himself on two occasions, and he used these opportunities to invite other learned monks to come to Taiwan. In 1925, he headed the Taiwan delegation to Taixu's East Asian Buddhist Conference,(62) and in 1929 he led a delegation of over ten followers to the Yongquan Temple in Fujian in order to pay homage to his master Wanshan on the occasion of the latter's 80th birthday. From there he took them on a tour of famous Buddhist sites on the mainland, returning the next year.

     However, it is the transmission of precepts that turned the Fayun Chan temple from a single active, successful temple into the root temple of a large dharma-lineage. During the Japanese colonial period, the Fayun Chan Temple hosted seven ordination sessions for both clergy and laity. The first four of these took place over four consecutive years: 1918, 1919, 1920, and 1921. Jueli and his temple were so popular with the Buddhists of Taiwan that by the end of the fourth of these sessions, the temple had accumulated over 250 resident clergy. The last three sessions took place after an interval of five years in 1926, 1927, and 1928.(63)



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     In these sessions, Jueli imparted to his disciples a very high regard for the precepts. In the preface to the 1928 Fayun Chan Temple Ordination Records [Fayun Chansi Tong Jie Lu 法雲禪寺同戒錄], he puts his views this way:

Of all those both ancient and modern who have studied the Buddha, there is none who has not viewed the virtue of precepts as important. The true Surangama-samadhi has the precepts for its root, and all forms of wisdom have the precepts for their first guide; such is the importance of the effects of taking the precepts! In a word, they are the seed of all buddhas and sages, and a guiding star for all human beings.(64)

Most Chinese sources agree that this was important because it provided a check against the Japanization of Buddhism in Taiwan, in which clergy, following the Japanese tradition, took the Bodhisattva Precepts of the Brahmājala-sūtra but not the full monastic precepts, and in which monks married, ate meat. and drank wine. In contrast Jueli, although an official Sōtōshū missionary dressed in Japanese-style monastic robes, lived at a distance from the center of power in Taihoku (Taipei), and spread a purely Chinese dharma.(65)

     He was one of the most successful of the Japanese-era monks in spreading this dharma. In these seven ordination sessions, he produced over 200 first-generation disciples, who either remained at the Fayun Chan Temple to live and



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work, or went and founded other temples within that lineage. The 1992 Gazetteer provides a chart that shows a total of 129 temples, ten of which were established by first-generation disciples, and the rest by second, third, or fourth-generation disciples.(66) Besides these, Jueli himself received invitations to take over other temples. In 1922, he accepted the abbotship of the famous Longshan Temple in the Mengjia area of Taiwan (presently the Wanhua district), and he helped his disciples in the planning and establishment of their own temples.(67) The "Fayun Chan Temple Lineage" that sprang from his efforts is concentrated mostly in central Taiwan, but has temples in all areas of the island.

     In 1930, after returning from leading the visitation team to the mainland to tour Buddhist sites, Jueli had "a sudden realization of impermanence," and began a vigorous lecture series at the Fayun Chan Temple, concentrating on the regulations of the Yongquan Temple, the Lotus Sutra, and Tiantai philosophy. In 1932, his father came over from Xiamen for a visit, according to some accounts bringing his adoptive son with him. Later in the same year, at the age of 52, Jueli began to feel unwell, and his disciples prevailed on him to go see a doctor, who diagnosed him with hepatitis, which later worsened into cirrhosis of the liver. As his condition deteriorated, he gave various instructions to his disciples. Miaoguo was to take over as abbot of the Fayun Chan Temple, and they were not to relax their efforts to further Buddhist education: "Take all the income from our mountain and forest lands, and devote it to running a Buddhist seminary; do not appropriate it



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for the clergy's daily expenses.(68)

     Jueli died on June 13, 1933, at the age of 53. The funeral attracted many notables, including the head of the Sōtōshū Betsuin in Taipei, and after his cremation, his disciples recovered several relics from among his ashes that testified to his spiritual attainments. The temple itself experienced difficulties almost immediately: in 1935, a massive earthquake in central Taiwan reduced almost all of its buildings to rubble, and Miaoguo was hard-pressed to rebuild it.(69) Japan was already at war with China at this time, which made materials difficult to come by. [n fact, towards the end of the war, the Japanese government began a program of recovering metal from citizens in order to get around an embargo that made it impossible to import it. One of the casualties of this program was the bell that used to give the local aborigines such headaches. After 1945, when Taiwan was returned to China, the Nationalist government's economic policies caused massive inflation, which further weakened the temple. As a result of these impediments, the Great Shrine Hall was not rebuilt until 1951.(70)

     The Fayun Chan Temple did eventually become a place for the transmission of the monastic precepts once again beginning in 1965, but this time, as we shall see, the program came under the control of the Buddhist Association of the Republic of China, whose dominance over the proceedings eclipsed the temple's



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own importance as the center of a dharma-lineage. Perhaps the most lasting legacy has been this lineage's special attention to women. The 1992 Gazetteer reports that women constituted the majority of Jueli's disciples, and his care of them and concern for their education empowered them in an unprecedented way, and perhaps helped set the stage for the dominance of nuns in post-Retrocession Taiwan.

     E. Ven. Yongding, 永定法師 (1877-1939), Ven. Yimin 義敏法師 (1875-1947), and the Chaofeng ("Surpassing the Peak") Temple Lineage.(71) Of the Four Great Ancestral Daochang. the Chaofeng Temple is the only one in the southern half of Taiwan; it sits on the slopes of Dagang Mountain 大崗山 in the Alian Rural District of Kaohsiung County. Its other distinguishing feature is that, unlike the other three, it was not actually founded by the monk who is revered as having brought the dominant dharma-lineage to the temple. In fact, the temple may have been founded nearly two hundred years before the arrival of the Ven. Yongding and his master Ven. Yimin in 1908.

     I say "may have been" because the actual founding date is unclear. Jiang Canteng quotes a Japanese travel guide published in 1937 as saying that the temple was founded by the monk Shaoguang 紹光法師 sometime during the Yongzheng reign of the Qing dynasty (1723-1735). It is possible, according to the Taiwan scholar Lin Li 林藜, that Shaoguang was an official of the fallen Ming



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dynasty who joined the sangha in order to gain anonymity and escape political persecution,(72) thus making it understandable that he would not have left behind many records. According to the story, he came to the mountain and built a thatched hut on the present site of the temple for solitary practice. Considering that the Ming court fell from power in 1644, and that the Qing dynasty gained control of Taiwan in 1683, Shaoguang would have been a very old man if he indeed founded the temple at this late date. However, there is no way to verify this story, and so we must leave it in the realm of speculation.

     No matter who actually founded the temple, Dagang Mountain is a natural site for a significant Buddhist place of practice. Although Qing dynasty gazetteers contain no mention of either Shaoguang or any temple deriving from his thatched hut, all contain extensive notices on this mountain and the way its topography inspires religious awe. The mountain rises to an elevation of 312 meters above sea level over the coastal plain of southwestern Taiwan.(73) There are ample springs of water on the mountainside, a cave of which the bottom has yet to be found and which is reputed to connect directly to the sea, and trees of such size and beauty that they inspired visiting Qing officials to compose poetry extolling their praises. One may also find sea shells on the mountaintop. One early Qing document quoted by Jiang Canteng even says that "when the country is about to experience some momentous event the mountain foretells it.(74)



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     There is another possibly apocryphal anecdote connected with the renovation of the temple, and that is the story of the Qing official Jiang Yunxun 蔣允焄 and his "skill in making tiles fly" [fei wa shu 飛瓦術]. According to the legend, Jiang was a very pious man. who spent a lot of his own time and money in restoring temples, including the Chaofeng Temple. While he was working on this project in the years immediately before 1763, he noticed one day that he was about to run out of rebuilding funds, and so he devised a ruse to keep the project moving forward. He began circulating the story that, in his youth, he had studied with an "extraordinary man" [qiren 奇人] who taught him the art of making tiles fly of their own accord. On a specified day, he would demonstrate this skill for anyone who cared to watch. The only stipulation was that they should each bring a tile with them.

     On the appointed day, people came from all around the countryside, each bringing a roof tile with them. They lined the road leading up to the temple and waited for Jiang to arrive. When he came, he folded his hands together and greeted the crowd very kindly and explained that he could not in fact make tiles fly, but that he hoped everyone would understand his motives in using this white lie to obtain building materials. The story ends by saying that not only did people not blame him for tricking them, they all opened their purses and pitched in to help with the restoration of the temple.

     Jiang Canteng points out that there are difficulties in accepting this story



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on face value. For one thing, Jiang Yunxun himself wrote the preface to the Revised Gazetteer of Fengshan County (1764), which was published the year after this story is reputed to have taken place. His preface makes no mention of the Chaofeng Temple or any renovation projects, and the section on local temples also makes no mention of a Chaofeng Temple or any other temple on Dagang Mountain.(75) For another thing, according to Qing law, it was illegal for government officials to take part in the construction or renovation of any but "official temples" (i.e., those to which officials could resort to ask help from the gods in matters of state). Buddhist temples were "non-official" by definition,(76) so it would have been difficult for Jiang to have taken part in the reconstruction of the Chaofeng Temple. Of course, there is always the possibility that he did help to rebuild the temple, and did not record it in his preface to the official gazetteer precisely because it was illegal!

     Be that as it may, many sources on the Chaofeng Temple simply give 1763 as the date of its official founding.(77) From that point on, the temple has a completely undistinguished history for the remainder of the Qing dynasty era. During this time, it functioned in much the same way as any other Buddhist temple in Taiwan; it provided funeral services as well as a place where the public could come and worship at its many altars, particularly their famous image of the bodhisattva



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Guanyin. There was another major renovation in 1880, initiated by one Li Jiancheng 李建成, but this was simply a physical renewal, not a major change of direction. The impetus for the temple's transformation into one of the four Great Ancestral Daochang did not come until after the Japanese government took over Taiwan in 1895.

     As we have seen before, there were anti-Japanese resistance groups active during the early years of the colonial period. One of these, led by Lin Shaomao 林少貓, rose in the area around Dagang Mountain almost immediately after the Japanese arrived. He and his rebel army occupied Dagang Mountain, which the Japanese army immediately surrounded. Rebels and criminals who decided to seek refuge on the mountain could usually hold out for a while, living off the food and water available naturally on the slopes. But because the mountain sits alone on the surrounding plain "like a capsized ship," there is no way to leave it or evade capture for long, and so Lin Shaomao's rebellion was quelled by 1898. However, the state of siege that obtained for the two or three years prior to this affected the temple as well as the rebels. The Japanese army did not allow food and provisions to be delivered up the mountain to anyone, and so the temple experienced a severe loss of resources and went into a rapid and steep decline. When Lin's army was captured, the temple authorities needed to find someone to lead it to an equally rapid recovery. In their search, they looked to the abbot and rebuilder of the Kaiyuan Temple 開元寺 in Tainan, the Ven. Yongding.

     Yongding was dearly a remarkable monk. A work by Zheng Zhuoyun 鄭



117 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period

卓雲 entitled Taiwan Kaiyuansi Shamen Liezhuan 台灣開元寺沙門烈傳 (Biographies of the Monks of the Kaiyuan Temple in Taiwan) gives the following notice:

Chan Master Yongding, style Hongjing 宏淨, lay name Lin Fanshu 林蕃薯 originally a native of Tainan ting 廳, born in 1877. He had a very gentle and loyal disposition. In 1896, he Joined the Longhua Sect of zhaijiao. In 1898, he became a monk at the Kaiyuan Temple under the Ven. Yimin, after which he continued to live at the temple and work very hard. For a time he was simultaneously prior [jianyuan](78) and abbot. He resigned the abbotship in 1903 and began doing things on behalf of the Chaofeng Temple while at the same time helping the Ven. Xuanjing repair the Great Hall of the Three Jewels at the Kaiyuan Temple. In this his accomplishments were notable. After completing this project, he removed to the Chaofeng Temple and planned other monasteries. He also founded the Longhu Convent [a nunnery adjoined to the Chaofeng Temple].(79)

One can get an idea of Yongding's capabilities and outstanding qualities simply by calculating his age at various points. The quotation states that he resigned the abbotship of the Kaiyuan Temple in 1903; at this time he was only 26 years old! The reader should also bear in mind that this is not a small, insignificant temple; it was one of the major temples in what had been the capital of Taiwan prior to the Japanese period.

     Other sources state that he came to the Kaiyuan Temple as abbot in 1902, after having been ordained only five years. Prior to this, he is reported to have served as the abbot of the Longhu Grotto [longhu yan 龍胡巖], which we mentioned in the last chapter as having been founded during the early Qing



118 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period

period by the Ven. Canche. He is also said to have helped restore two major Daoist temples in Tainan. From this we can see that he was a very capable and energetic young monk, and perhaps in need of constant challenges to exercise his capabilities. The Kaiyuan Temple provided him with one opportunity to show what he could do when he supervised the rebuilding of the Great Shrine Hall. However, the Kaiyuan Temple was still an old and established temple with most of its organization and procedures already in place, while the notice quoted above makes plain that Yongding had ambitions of setting up new monasteries according to his own plan. The invitation from the Chaofeng Temple, a temple in deep trouble that needed a more thoroughgoing renovation and reorganization, must have looked very attractive to him. For this reason, he began working with the temple from a distance while fulfilling his obligation to complete the rebuilding project at the Kaiyuan Temple, and as soon as this was finished in 1908, he moved, bringing with him his ordination lineage.

     The lineage he inherited was that of his master, the Ven. Yimin. Yimin, whose lay name was Zhou Chunmu 周春木, was actually only two years older than Yongding. However, he entered into Buddhist monastic life much earlier, having received the tonsure under the Ven. Miaodi 妙諦法師 at the Kaiyuan Temple while still a boy. Later, in 1896, he went to the Yongquan Temple on Gushan in Fujian and received full ordination. He returned to the Kaiyuan Temple shortly thereafter and busied himself with religious work, and it was during this period that Yongding came to him for tonsure and took him as his



119 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period

master. Yimin seems to have regarded having Yongding for a disciple as his only significant accomplishment up to that point, and the two men seemed to share a sense of common destiny. Thus, when Yongding accepted the call from the Chaofeng Temple, Yimin went with him.

     According to Jiang Canteng, the matter of this lineage was another element influencing Yongding's decision to leave. At the time that the two men lived at the Kaiyuan Temple, there were multiple tonsure lineages emanating from the Yongquan Temple in Fujian represented among the resident clergy, and he says that Yongding's and Yimin's was not the main lineage; rather, the lineage of Yongding's successor as abbot, Ven. Xuanjing 玄精法師, was dominant. In short, the kind of competitive and cliquish atmosphere that every other ordaining temple besides the Yongquan Temple tried to prevent by not permitting resident monks to give the full precepts to their own tonsure-disciples arose at the Kaiyuan Temple. Thus, even though Yongding had the status of retired abbot at the tender age of 26, he saw that his future prospects at the Kaiyuan Temple were limited and felt the need to go elsewhere.(80)



120 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period

     Although it may appear from this that Yongding was a dominant personality who turned his own master into his follower, Yimin's role was actually very positive; indeed, without him, the Chaofeng Temple would never have become the center of a ma}or Buddhist ordination lineage in Taiwan during the Japanese period. Yongding excelled in two areas: he was very competent in fundraising and construction, and he had a good sense of religious propriety. However, he spent the remainder of his life on Dagang Mountain pursuing the renovation of the Chaofeng Temple and the building of its sister institution for "nuns," the Longhu ("Dragon Lake") Convent [Longhu An 龍胡庵]. Even though he pursued these tasks with great skill and energy, he was not inclined toward outreach, and it was Yimin, who outlived him by eight years, who served as the founding abbot for many of the temples within the Chaofeng Temple system. Thus, we will examine these two men's work separately.

     Yongding had great ambitions for the Chaofeng Temple; he wanted to turn it into a an institution whose support network extended beyond its own environs and would serve as a pilgrimage site for all of Taiwan. Indeed, this was the only way the temple could thrive, because its remote location meant that there was no local community of people within walking distance who might develop lifelong ties of loyalty to it. If it was to survive, the temple had to draw people to it. He saw that before this goal could be reached, he needed to arrange



121 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period

for two prerequisites: first, visitors would need a way to reach the temple easily and conveniently, and would need food and lodging while there; second, they would need a reason to come. Thus, the building program that occupied him for the rest of his life consisted of building a road and guest quarters to fulfil the first prerequisite, while at the same time building a magnificent Great Hall of Guanyin that would not only play on her cult's island-wide popularity, but would also capitalize on the reputation of the mountain as a site where there had been many miraculous manifestations of the bodhisattva.

     The costs of these projects were staggering. The road alone would cost 45,000 yen to construct, a figure that equals the entire combined road and bridge budgets for Kaohsiung city and county for 1930.(81) Construction of the other buildings and facilities cost about the same figure again, and so it is understandable that it took Yongding until 1926 to raise enough money to begin building the Hall (the year he received permission from the government to expand his fundraising to the entire island), and that the project was not completed until shortly before his death in 1939. However, from the very beginning of Yongding's tenure at the Chaofeng Temple, another factor operated to further slow down the process of renovation: the necessity of constructing a new facility for his female disciples.

     In 1908, the woman who would become the first of these female followers arrived seeking a place to practice religious austerities. Yongding at that time



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was 31 years old, the woman was 27, and he realized that cohabitation in the same temple would offend not only his own sensibilities, but in all likelihood those of his donors as well. Consequently, he ordered the construction of bamboo-and-thatch buildings at a respectable distance down the mountain, which he named the Longhu Convent. This establishment enjoyed even more success in its way than the Chaofeng Temple itself; within two years it had 94 women in residence and outgrew its facilities. This forced Yongding, as abbot of both temples, to divide his fundraising activities in order to keep up with the rapid growth of the Longhu Convent while pursuing his original plans for renovating the Chaofeng Temple. However, he went at this additional task with his characteristic enthusiasm, and the building proceeded apace. The first tile-roofed buildings were completed in 1918, by 1926 the convent had a guest reception room, the refectory opened the following year, and by 1931 it had a guest dormitory.(82) By 1935 the Convent's resident population had grown to over 140 women.(83)

     However, there is one feature of life at the Longhu Convent that must be noted, and that is that none of the women who lived there ever sought ordination as Buddhist nuns, and apparently Yongding did not insist that they take this step. The women who lived there full-time wore white tunics over black long pants, and tied their hair in a topknot. Yongding's first female disciple, the Ven. Kaihui 開會法師 succeeded him as abbess of the convent after his death in



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1939, but it was not until after Retrocession that she took the full nun's precepts. In 1953, at the first BAROC-sponsored ordination session at the Daxian Temple 大仙寺 in Tainan county, she went with fifteen other residents of the convent. Fifteen of them took the full precepts of the bhiksuni, while one took the novices precepts. Ven. Kaihui was already 72 years old.(84)

     This reveals another unique characteristic of the Chaofeng Temple system. There is no doubt that Yongding was a brilliant fundraiser and an able administrator, and that he had a vision of what the Chaofeng Temple and Longhu Convent could be that motivated him over the course of many years. However, this vision did not extend to a strict transmission of the monastic precepts. Unlike the other three temples already examined, the Chaofeng Temple never held monastic ordinations, and its residents rarely went to receive the precepts anywhere else, whether in Taiwan or on the Chinese mainland.(85) The Longhu convent, as we have seen, had no properly-ordained residents until after 1945, and only held one transmission of the Lay Bodhisattva Precepts in 1929.(86)

     Another area in which Yongding's activities differed from those of the other great founding figures examined in this chapter is education. The Chaofeng Temple itself never sponsored any educational events, and only sent one or two clergy abroad to study in Japan or the mainland. Yongding himself had only a



124 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period

minimal education, in. Buddhism, and never wrote any books or contributed any articles to Buddhist journals.(87)

     This is not to say that he was not concerned with the quality of religious life at his temples. On the contrary, in 1929 he became quite concerned about the fact that the "nuns" in the Longhu Convent seemed to know nothing of the decorum expected of Buddhist clergy, and so he invited the Ven. Huiquan 會泉法師 of Nanputuo Temple to come and give a series of lectures on monastic etiquette.(88) Also, contemporary sources praised the solemn atmosphere of the two temples, where the residents lived lives of strict seclusion from the world and practiced rigorous austerities. Thus, Yongding's priorities appear to have been more practical than theoretical: he wanted to build a place of serious religious practice and a major pilgrimage site, but did not believe that monastic precepts or Buddhist education were strictly necessary for either of these.

     However, with no tradition of transmitting the precepts, one is led to wonder on what basis is it possible to speak of a "Chaofeng Temple lineage," a question whose answer necessitates an examination of the activities of Ven. Yimin, Yongding's tonsure-master. While Yongding was occupied with the enormous task of construction and renovation on Dagang Mountain itself, Yimin accepted an invitation in 1911 to take over a former zhaitang, or zhaijiao meeting-hall, in



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Chiayi called the Deyuan Chan Temple 德源禪寺. After making the necessary renovations, he remained as abbot of that temple from 1911 to 1926, after which he handed the reins to Ven. Yicun 義存法師, a junior disciple of his own master. Even though this temple's clergy subsequently traced their lineage through Yimin and Yongding did not figure into the matter, it still counted as part of the Chaofeng Temple system. In 1913, Yimin took over another temple in Chiayi, the Miyuan Temple 彌院寺, and served as its abbot for three years, after which he turned it over to another disciple within his lineage named Miaoyuan 妙圓法師. In 1922, Yimin founded yet another temple in Changhua called the Biyun Chan Temple 碧雲禪寺. In 1940, another of Yimin's disciples from Yongding's generation named Yongli 永力法師 founded the Baiyun Temple 白雲寺 in Kaohsiung. In this way, Yimin proved much more inclined to outreach than Yongding, and took the initiative in propagating the Chaofeng Temple system geographically.(89)

     Other temples within the system came into being through Yongding's own tonsure disciples. For example, Ven. Kaiji founded the Lianfeng Temple 蓮峰寺, also on Dagang Mountain, in 1918, apparently so that visitors could have a temple with more convenient access and accommodations while repairs were underway further up the mountain, at the Chaofeng Temple.(90) In all, the 1992 Gazetteer lists 42 temples within this system, all of them located south of Chiayi



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and most of them in Kaohsiung city or Kaohsiung county.(91)

     However, with no tradition of ordination or education, the system began to unravel even before the end of the Japanese colonial period. Yongding's vision for the Chaofeng Temple succeeded for a time, and during the two years before his death it drew some sixty thousand pilgrims annually.(92) When he died, Kaihui took over as abbess of the Longhu Convent and Kaizhao 開照法師 took control of the Chaofeng Temple itself. However, their tenures were cut short by the intensification of the Pacific War. As Allied bombers began targeting Taiwan, the Japanese government felt that a brightly-colored temple sitting on the top of a solitary mountain in the middle of a broad plain made too inviting a target, and so they gave all the temples on the mountain some financial compensation and ordered them all to vacate. They then set to work demolishing them, and the Great Hall of Guanyin that Yongding spent over twenty-five years planning and building came down in 1942.

     During this time, the residents of the three temples within the Chaofeng system-the Chaofeng Temple itself, the Longhu Convent, and the Lianfeng Temple founded by Kaiji-regrouped on the plain below and, under Yimin's leadership, quickly pooled their compensation funds and built the New Chaofeng Temple [Xin Chaofeng Si 新超峰寺]. Yimin served as the first abbot of this new temple, and Ven. Kaiji succeeded him. After the end of the war in 1945, many of the clergy from the Chaofeng Temple, led by Yongding's disciple Kaizhao, returned



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to the mountain and began the work of rebuilding, which was still in progress when I visited the site in 1993. Today, it is referred to as the Old Chaofeng Temple, while the New Chaofeng Temple continues its existence on the plains below.

     There are probably a number of other reasons for the failure of the Chaofeng Temple system to congeal into a viable lineage besides the lack of emphasis on precepts and the disruptions of the war. As Jiang Canteng points out, it is the only one of the Four Great Ancestral daochang not to associate with Japanese Buddhism for protection. Whereas the Fayun Chan Temple and Lingquan Chan Temple both associated with the Sōtōshū Myōshinji-ha 妙心寺派, and the Lingyun Chan Temple affiliated with Rinzai, the Chaofeng Temple remained independent, and to the end of the war the Japanese government classified it as an "old customary temple" [kyūkan jibyō 舊慣寺廟], and never reclassified it as a "Buddhist temple" [butsuji 佛寺], as had been the case when the other three temples gained affiliation.(93) Also, we might speculate that, since the majority of residents in these temples never sought full ordination, they failed to gain recognition as legitimate Buddhist clergy when the refugee monks arrived from the mainland and took over the political infrastructure of Taiwan Buddhism in 1949; it is far more likely that these mainlanders simply looked upon them with the same distress and scorn with which they viewed the whole phenomenon of zhaijiao.

     Whatever the reason, one of the anecdotes related by Jiang Canteng in his



128 BUDDHISM IN TAIWAN Chapter Two. The Early Japanese Period

examination of the temple and its lineage illustrates the lack of cohesion that caused the association to dissolve after the war. In 1967, several members of temples within this system held a meeting to organize the "Dagang Mountain Dharma-Lineage Fellowship" [Dagang Shan Benshan Famai Lianyihui 大崗山本山法脈聯誼會]. Although they succeeded in drafting a charter, the organization never materialized because the retired abbot Kaizhao, Yongding's successor, would not permit the leaders to set up an office within the Chaofeng Temple itself.(94)

     F. Conclusions. We have spent a great deal of time telling the stories of the Four Great Ancestral Daochang because they had significance, not only for the Buddhism of the period, but also for the events that followed Retrocession. First, they provided a formal network for temples that better enabled them to resist the encroachments of Japanese Buddhist customs and practices that offended Chinese religious sensibilities. Temples within these systems generally hewed to traditional Chinese Buddhist customs in not permitting clerical marriage or the consumption of meat and wine. Second, they provided the means for a more widespread dissemination of the ordination lineages of the Yongquan Temple on Drum Mountain in Fuzhou. It is perhaps ironic that this increased dissemination of Chinese ordination lineages came about at a time when Taiwan was not formally part of China. Third, it is my own speculation that the increased attention paid to Buddhist education for nuns, especially in the Fayun Chan Temple system



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under Ven. Jueli, helped set the stage for the very active role that nuns were to play in post-Retrocession Buddhism.(95) Not only do nuns predominate over monks numerically, they are also held in equal or greater respect for their religious accomplishments in modern Taiwan, and I believe the roots of this phenomenon extend into the Japanese period.

     This treatment has therefore shown how Chinese Buddhism continued to thrive and even grow and develop under the Japanese colonial administration, but only at the local level. When we shift our perspective to the level of national Buddhist organizations, we see a much greater degree of interaction and cooperation between the Chinese Buddhist camp and the Japanese authorities and schools of Buddhism. Although the original motivation for this increased cooperation came from a combination of fear and realpolitik, it eventuated in some genuine rapprochement, at least between the nationally-prominent monks and zhaijiao adherents who joined the various association that came into being in the 1910s and 1920s. It is to these national organizations that we turn our attention in the next chapter.




(1) Li Hongzhang, Memoirs (Boston: Houghton-Mifflin, 1913), p. 268, quoted in Murray and Hong, 1991, p. 282. Chapter one of Kerr 1974 gives an overview of the period of Qing rule over Taiwan which largely conforms to the view expressed in this quotation. Evidently, the Qing court regarded Taiwan as a troublesome backwater and invested no significant resources in its development.[back to text]

(2) See Kerr 1974, p. 28-34 for accounts of these early anti-Japanese uprisings.[back to text]

(3) 1971 Gazetteer, p. 53a. However, Chen Lingrong points out that there were Japanese Buddhist monks in Taiwan prior to its cession to Japan, but gives no particulars to support this statement. See Chen Lingrong 1992, p. 117.[back to text]

(4) 1971 Gazetteer, p. 53a.[back to text]

(5) In fact, the Japanese presence in Taiwan was never large. Even at the end of the colonial period, there were less than half a million Japanese on the island, as opposed to around six million ethnic Chinese.[back to text]

(6) The Japanese government disestablished Buddhism at the beginning of the Meiji Era in 1868, and had worked sporadically to separate all religions from civic functions and support. The exception to this was State Shintō, which made the case that it was not a religion but the official symbolic center of the state. See Hardacre 1989, "Introduction" and Chapter One.[back to text]

(7) 1971 Gazetteer, p. 53b.[back to text]

(8) Lin Hengdao 1976, p. 42. The reader must bear in mind that among the first measures passed by the Guomindang (Kuomintang) government when it arrived in Taiwan was land reform, which also had the effect of expropriating temple lands. In addition. Prof. John R. Shepherd of the University of Virginia, in a private communication dated August 18, 1995, informs me that the Japanese government did honor temple land claims. Thus, I am skeptical of Prof. Lin's assertion that the blame for commercialization of temples lies solely with the Japanese. See chapter three.[back to text]

(9) One of the ten sects of Jōdo Shinshū, it was founded by Shinran's disciple Shōshin (1187-1275). It had suffered a decline and had dissolved for a time, but was re-constituted during the Tokugawa period and officially recognized as an independent sect in 1872. See notice in Ui Hakuju 1938, p. 163b. Also see Matsunaga and Matsunaga 1976, vol. 2, p. 127.[back to text]

(10) This sect was founded by Zennebō Shōkū, a disciple of Jōdosū founder Hōnen, in the 13th century. See Ui Hakuju 1938, p. 622a for notice on this sect. See also Matsunaga and Matsunaga 1976, vol. 2, p. 73-74.[back to text]

(11) A branch of Nichiren School which came into being in 1891 when the Honjōji-ha changed its name to Honmon Hokkeshū and re-registered with the Meiji government. See Ui Hakuju 1938, p. 974b, definition three for a brief notice. Also see Matsunaga and Matsunaga 1976, vol. 2, p. 181.[back to text]

(12) 1971 Gazetteer, p. 53b.[back to text]

(13) Chen Lingrong 1992, p. 117.[back to text]

(14) Chen Lingrong 1992, p. 121.[back to text]

(15) Chen Lingrong 1992, p. 119. Looking on the bright side, Chen points out that the Buddhist sects had a much easier rime in spreading their influence than did other Japanese religious groups, since Japan and China share a Buddhist heritage and the Chinese could relate to it more easily. The various Christian denominations ran a close second with 27,181 Chinese adherents, while State Shintō shrines only attracted a total of 18,020 Chinese people. See p. 119 and 139.[back to text]

(16) For instance, in the introduction to Chu Ch'i-lin, ed. 1988, vol. 1. "Introduction." I might also point out that photos of these four temples grace the cover of this book.

     I should mention here that I have chosen not to translate the word daochang 道場. The literal meaning is "Place of the Way," and it denotes any place where one cultivates religious or quasi-religious practices (such as martial arts or calligraphy). Some western authors have retroverted it back to the Sanskrit term bodhimandala, but I believe that a translation from one foreign language to another is no translation at all. Others have tried such phrases as "Place of Truth," but these are clumsy and miss the mark.[back to text]

(17) The reader should be aware that this is not the only way in which to divide the important relationships and lineages obtaining during the Japanese period. Two works, the 1992 Gazetteer, p. 127-145, and Liang and Huang, ed. 1993, p. 241-250, both speak of only three "Great Dharma-lineages" at this time. Both base this on the statement that Ven. Yongding of the Chaofeng Temple and Ven. Benyuan of the Lingyun Chan Temple both came out of the Kaiyuan Temple in Tainan, and therefore both of their temples should be assimilated to the Kaiyuan Temple lineage. Although this is true enough for Ven. Yongding, who was in fact the abbot of the Kaiyuan Temple for a time, I find no indication in my other sources that Benyuan spent any time at all in that temple. Jiang Canteng, who provides the most detailed account of Benyuan's life that I have seen, makes no mention of any connection, and these two books provide no further information beyond the flat assertion that he is part of the Kaiyuan Temple system in some unspecified way.

     The 1992 Gazetteer, on page 127, mentions another tradition of dividing Taiwan Buddhism during the Japanese period into seven major lines, each based on a particularly eminent monk who attracted and tonsured many disciples.

     I have decided to adhere to the scheme proposed by Jiang and Chu Ch'i-lin's Famous Buddhist Monasteries in Taiwan for the reasons given in the main text.

     This is also a good place to mention that Liang and Huang's book, despite being the only book-length attempt I know of to render a history of Buddhism in Taiwan, cannot be recommended as a source. The text is incoherent, full of ellipses, and provides no documentation for any of its assertions.[back to text]

(18) Jiang Canteng 1993a, p. 49.[back to text]

(19) Welch 1967, p. 276-279. I have taken the liberty of changing his original Wade-Giles romanizations and changing them to Hanyu Pinyin for consistency.[back to text]

(20) Welch 1967, p. 138-141.[back to text]

(21) All of the material in this section, unless otherwise noted, is condensed from Jiang Canteng 1993a, p. 49-62.[back to text]

(22) 1992 Gazetteer, p. 208.[back to text]

(23) He adds, "The reader must not compare this with today's Taiwan Buddhists, who can contribute large sums of money whenever they want for temples." Jiang Canteng 1993a, p. 53.[back to text]

(24) Welch 1968, p. 160-173. It is interesting to note his report that this is exactly the time period in which large numbers of temples in Fujian and Guangdong provinces took refuge with Japanese Buddhist lineages in order to gain extraterritorial privileges and avert the confiscation of their lands. See p. 165.[back to text]

(25) At least through an orthodox Buddhist line. As we have seen, the zhaijiao sects transmitted the lay precepts regularly.[back to text]

(26) Sengcan 1981, p. 2. This article contains the complete text of Shanhui's speech at the conference. For more information on the conference itself, see Welch 1968, p. 56, 166-167.[back to text]

(27) Ven. Jueli, about whom we will have more to say below, was another partner in this enterprise, but it seems he had a different purpose in mind. The Annals of Jueli's life state that, as a person who could not speak Japanese himself, he was concerned that there be a school that would provide a good education in Chinese and help bring an end to discrimination against non-Japanese in the public sphere. See Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 184-185.[back to text]

(28) See article "Derong" in FG 6017c.[back to text]

(29) 1992 Gazetteer, p. 128-131.[back to text]

(30) On a personal note, I remember being able to see Guanyin Mountain from the bus stop near my apartment in Peitou. It is so called because, viewed from a certain angle, it bears a resemblance to the bodhisattva in profile.[back to text]

(31) It is unclear to me whether Benyuan actually succeeded Baohai as abbot or if he was the founding abbot. Mr. Jiang says specifically that Benyuan "took over" as abbot, but he does not say when Baohai died. and [ have not yet found any other information on this. The Foguang Dacidian 佛光大辭典, in its entries on both "Benyuan" and "Lingyun Chansi" refer to Benyuan as the founder and first abbot.[back to text]

(32) Here I remind the reader of Lin Hengdao's comment, given in the first chapter, that temples on the mainland by and large were more simple in both architecture and pantheon than their counterparts in Taiwan.[back to text]

(33) Jiang Canteng 1993a, p. 65.[back to text]

(34) This method still works in modern Taiwan. I attended a refuges ceremony on July II, 1993. After the completion of the ceremony itself, the abbot gave a talk on the significance of taking refuge and what it meant in the subsequent lives of the participants. Among other things, he told them that he was their Refuge Master [guiyishi 皈依師], and so they had a special relationship with him personally. They ought therefore to return to the temple often so that he could get to know them better, and so that they could tap the power of the temple as the place where they took refuge. He also told them that this relationship gave them a special responsibility to support the temple, both personally and materially.[back to text]

(35) This term does not appear in any of my dictionaries, and I am not sure what a daojieshi's functions are.[back to text]

(36) Zhu Qichang, ed. 1977, p. 223.[back to text]

(37) The major source for the life of both monks is Shi Chanhui 1981. This work will subsequently be referred to as "Annals" in the text.[back to text]

(38) In fact both dates produce anomalies in the account of his life. In various places of his autobiographical statement, and in various entries in his Annals, calculating backwards from his stated age at the time of known events yields both dates in turn.[back to text]

(39) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 124.[back to text]

(40) 1992 Gazetteer, p. 198.[back to text]

(41) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 129.[back to text]

(42) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 130. The actual entry states that he resided in the Lingyun Chan Temple founded by Benyuan. but the editor goes on to note that she received material from the Lingquan Chan Temple which showed that Jueli had stayed there instead. I believe this is more likely; although the editor of the Annals fails to bring up this point, the Lingyun Chan Temple had not yet been established, and its future abbot Benyuan was still at the Yongquan Temple in Fuzhou.[back to text]

(43) He may or may not have made the acquaintance of Ven. Miaoguo during this first stay in Taiwan. According to the Biography of Ven. Miaoguo (Miaoguo Heshang Zhuan 妙果和尚傳), Jueli stayed in the Lingyun Chan Temple in 1902, a date that is even less credible, and that Miaoguo, still a layman at this time, went to visit him there. Miaoguo's Biography is quoted in Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 132. However, as the editor notes. Jueli's own autobiographical statement places his first visit to Taiwan in 1909. See Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 119.[back to text]

(44) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 131.[back to text]

(45) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 157; 1992 Gazetteer, p. 209-210; Liang and Huang, ed. 1993, p. 288-289.[back to text]

(46) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 133; 1992 Gazetteer, p. 210.[back to text]

(47) 1992 Gazetteer, p. 210.[back to text]

(48) This post is one of the six main administrative posts in a Chan temple after the Tang dynasty. He is responsible for the bookkeeping and accounting work in the main office. See FG 6467b.[back to text]

(49) The art of leaping to great heights.[back to text]

(50) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 135.[back to text]

(51) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 136-137. This kind of report, it should be noted, reflects the Chinese view of relations with the aboriginal tribes, and ignores any possibility that the aborigines might have had genuine grievances against the Chinese and the Japanese. That the bells would cause the aborigines headaches in their homes on the mountains while not so affecting the Chinese who lived right under them in the temples seems unlikely.[back to text]

(52) See above in section on Shanhui.[back to text]

(53) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 146.[back to text]

(54) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 151-152.[back to text]

(55) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 186.[back to text]

(56) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 187.[back to text]

(57) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 148.[back to text]

(58) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 187.[back to text]

(59) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 148-149.[back to text]

(60) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 147. Ven. Chanhui. in her introduction to the Annals, states that she was unable to find any extant copies of this magazine. [bid, p. 121.][back to text]

(61) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 147.[back to text]

(62) See above in section on Shanhui for more information on this meeting.[back to text]

(63) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 143-144, 150-152.[back to text]

(64) Quoted in Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 152.[back to text]

(65) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 146. It should be noted that this dichotomy of corrupt Japanese/pure Chinese Buddhism, a common theme in materials relating to Buddhism in Taiwan, cannot be taken at face value; it is simply not the case that all tendencies towards liberalizing the monastic precepts to allow for clerical marriage and the abandonment of vegetarianism stemmed from Japanese influence. The monk Lin Qiuwu 林秋梧, a resident of the Kaiyuan Temple in Tainan during the Japanese period and a firm anti-Japanese partisan, advocated these very things on Marxist grounds. See Li Xiaofeng 1991 for Lin's biography.[back to text]

(66) 1992 Gazetteer, p. 133-141.[back to text]

(67) Shi Chanhui 1981. p.145, 151.[back to text]

(68) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 156. That the Fayun Chan Temple was able to derive significant income from its landholdings controverts historian Lin Hengdao's assertion, quoted earlier in this chapter, that the Japanese expropriated all such lands.[back to text]

(69) Ven. Chanhui, the editor of the Annals, states that virtually none of Jueli's writings or calligraphy scrolls survived the earthquake, which makes research into his religious teachings virtually impossible. Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 121.[back to text]

(70) Shi Chanhui 1981, p. 161.[back to text]

(71) Most of the material in this section is summarized from Jiang Canteng 1993-4.[back to text]

(72) The Chinese term for this is "escapist Chan" [taochan 逃禪]. For a discussion of Ming loyalists who went into hiding in Buddhist temples disguised as monks, see Brook 1993, chapter 1.[back to text]

(73) Chen Zhengxiang 1993, p. 43a.[back to text]

(74) The document is the Taiwan Jilue 台灣紀略. Jiang does not give its date and provenance. Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 37/12, p. 29.[back to text]

(75) I have checked the entry on Dagang Mountain in Chen Zhengxiang 1993, p. 43a in order to make sure that the mountain has not changed names over the years. Also see Chongxiu Fengshan Xianzhi (Revived Gazetteer of Fengshan County) 1764 vol. 4, p. 730-733 for contemporary notices on temples in that county.[back to text]

(76) Brook 1993, p. 29-30.[back to text]

(77) The Foguang Dacidian (6:5283a) confuses things further by saying that the temple was founded in 1763 by Shaoguang.[back to text]

(78) That is, the head of the business office. See Welch 1967, p. 26-29 for further information.[back to text]

(79) Quoted in Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/1, p. 30-31. Translation mine.[back to text]

(80) Ven. Xuanjing is quite a donating character in his own right. He was born the same year as Yimin, 1875, in the Yanshui ting of Tainan. His lay name was Cai Zhang 蔡漳, and from an early age he displayed a chivalrous attitude and outstanding skills in Daoist practices, including making himself invisible and curing chronic illnesses, and so the people called him Cai Zhenren 蔡真人, or Cai the True Man, a common term of respect for an accomplished Daoist master. After 1895, he, like many of his fellow Chinese citizens, became despondent over the cession of Taiwan to Japan, and so he entered the Longhua Sect of zhaijiao, and later had his head shaved at the Kaiyuan Temple by the Ven. Rongfang 榮芳法師. He also went to the Yongquan Temple in Fujian for full ordination, and returned to the Kaiyuan Temple where he succeeded Yongding as abbot in 1903. However, he could not refrain from continuing to cultivate and use his supernatural powers, and got mixed up with a certain Huang Shanshi 黃善士, who was spreading his own eccentric teachings between Tainan and Chiayi. This attracted the notice of the local Japanese officials, who persuaded him through a local Sōtō missionary to migrate to Japan in 1909. However, this felt too much like exile to him, so he slipped away to Fujian. and settled in the Haiyin (Ocean Sound) Temple 海音寺 in Quanzhou. where he died in 1921 at the age of 44. His biographical notice in the work by Zheng Zhuoyun cited above says it is unfortunate that he got involved in the "left way" of Huang Shanshi, but really his every word and deed were done for the benefit of the people.[back to text]

(81) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/6, p. 28-29.[back to text]

(82) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/4, p. 29.[back to text]

(83) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/7, p. 32.[back to text]

(84) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/7, p. 33.[back to text]

(85) The 1992 Gazetteer mentions Ven. Kaican 開參法師 as having gone to Fujian province to seek ordination at the Fuguo Temple, making him the only native Taiwan cleric to my knowledge to take the full precepts somewhere other than the Yongquan Temple. 1992 Gazetteer, p. 214.[back to text]

(86) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/7, p. 32.[back to text]

(87) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/7, p. 34.[back to text]

(88) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/7, p. 32. Jiang observes that the women's ignorance of temple decorum was not due to the bad influence of Japanese Buddhism, as some have claimed. Rather, it is the natural consequence of not seeking monastic ordination, because it is at the ordination session that Buddhist clergy normally learn the rules of behavior.[back to text]

(89) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/5, p. 31-32.[back to text]

(90) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/5, p. 32-33.[back to text]

(91) 1992 Gazetteer, p. 143-145.[back to text]

(92) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/6, p. 31.[back to text]

(93) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/4, p. 30.[back to text]

(94) Jiang Canteng 1993-4, 38/4, p. 31.[back to text]

(95) We will see in chapter seven how one of Ven. Jueli's female students, Ven. Ruxue 如學法師, went on to distinguish herself in the field of Buddhist education in the post-Retrocession period.[back to text]




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