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Gyonen's Jodo Homon Genrusho and the Importance of Lineage to the Pure Land Tradition
Author Blum, Mark Laurence
PublisherUniversity of California, Berkeley
Publisher Url
LocationBerkeley, CA, US [伯克利, 加利福尼亞州, 美國]
Content type博碩士論文=Thesis and Dissertation
InstitutionUniversity of California, Berkeley
DepartmentBuddhist Studies
AdvisorLancaster, Lewis
Publication year1990
KeywordGyonen; Jodo homon genrusho; Pure Land Buddhism
AbstractThis thesis presents a study of the major developments in thirteenth century Japanese Pure Land Buddhism based on the perspective of the Jodo Homon Genrusho, written in 1311 by Gyonen, the abbot of Kaidan'in.

Part I is divided into five chapters. Chapter One explains the value of this text as an historical document, its structure and the meaning thereof. There is discussion of a newly emerging historical consciousness in Japanese Buddhism, the replacement of the mappo paradigm with that of sangoku, and the attempt to establish the legitimacy of the Pure Land tradition by means of lineage. Chapter Two looks at historical developments that led to the development of a native Japanese religious voice expressed in terms of Pure Land Buddhism in the thirteenth century. Focus is on Honen's role and the encounter between the evolution of traditional doctrine and non-orthodox religious forces outside the monastic establishments.

Chapter Three presents a biography of Gyonen based on information contained in biographical material written in the 17th and 18th centuries. Chapter Four outlines the chief soteriological issues in Pure Land Buddhism in terms of the Buddhist concept of marga, particularly how Pure Land thought developed as an alternative marga scheme and the importance of samadhi and anutpattikadharmaksanti. Chapter Five gives a textual history of the Jodo Homon Genrusho, including an introduction to the four commentaries used as source materials for this study.

Part Two presents an annotated translation of the Genrusho, with the intent of documenting all references to person, place and text mentioned. The translation is divided into eight chapters following the traditional outline of the work kamon (sk20). For reference, a reproduction is included of a wood-block edition of the text prepared in 1814 by the distinguished scholar of Jodo-Shinshu, Eryu.

The Conclusion looks at Gyonen's own Pure Land beliefs, his historical consciousness, where he is located in later lineage texts, as well as the possibility of this work having been apocryphally ascribed to Gyonen.

Finally there is a Bibliography of selected materials for further reference. I have also added an appendix on the extant pre-modern lineage texts of the Jodo-shu, all of which post-date the Jodo Homon Genrusho.
Created date1998.04.28
Modified date2016.05.17

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