Critical Readings on Pure Land Buddhism in Japan (3 vols.)

Series:  Critical Readings
Galen Amstutz
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Pure Land was one of the main fields of mythopoesis and discourse among the Asian Buddhist traditions, and in Japan of central cultural importance from the Heian period right up to the present. However, its range, inconsistency, variability, and complexity have tended to be misevaluated. The pieces reproduced in this set, organized both chronologically and thematically, have been chosen as linchpin works accentuating the diversity of what evolved under this heading of Buddhism. Special attention is given to the traps into which Western observers may fall, the role of the large True Pure Land (Jōdoshinshū) school, and the richness of Tokugawa and twentieth-century developments. These selections of previously published articles will serve as an essential starting point for anyone interested in this perhaps underestimated area of Buddhist studies.

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Critical Readings on Pure Land Buddhism in Japan
Volume 1
Editor(s): Galen Amstutz
Publication Date: 04 Jun 2020
Critical Readings on Pure Land Buddhism in Japan
Volume 2
Editor(s): Galen Amstutz
Publication Date: 04 Jun 2020
Critical Readings on Pure Land Buddhism in Japan
Volume 3
Editor(s): Galen Amstutz
Publication Date: 04 Jun 2020
Galen D. Amstutz (Ph.D. Religion and East Asian Studies 1992, Princeton University) has served in a variety of roles including librarian, ESL teacher, Buddhist minister, college professor in the United States, Germany and Japan, translator, journal editor, and administrator at Harvard University’s Reischauer Institute of Japanese Studies. He is currently an adjunct instructor at the Institute of Buddhist Studies (affiliate of Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California) and publishes on Pure Land Buddhism, starting with Interpreting Amida (1997).
Students and scholars interested in the fields of Religious studies (general), Buddhist studies and Japanese studies.
Introduction: Brill Critical Readings on Pure Land Buddhism in Japan

part 1: Useful Overarching Perspectives

1 Buddhism as a Religion of Hope: Observations on the “Logic” of a Doctrine and Its Foundational Myth
Luis O. Gómez

2 Pure Land Buddhism as an Alternative Mārga
Mark L. Blum

part 2: Early Presence in Japan

3 The Development of Mappō Thought in Japan (I)
Michele Marra

4 The Development of Mappō Thought in Japan (II)
Michele Marra

5 The Growth of Pure Land Buddhism in the Heian Period
Robert F. Rhodes

6 Ōjōyōshū, Nihon Ōjō Gokuraku-ki, and the Construction of Pure Land Discourse in Heian Japan
Robert F. Rhodes

7 With the Help of “Good Friends”
Deathbed Ritual Practices in Early Medieval Japan
Jacqueline I. Stone

part 3: Turn to the Nembutsu as the Sole Solution

8 Hōnen on Attaining Pure Land Rebirth: the Selected Nenbutsu of the Original Vow
Allan A. Andrews

9 Hōnen and Popular Pure Land Piety: Assimilation and Transformation
Allan A. Andrews

10 Socio-Economic Impacts of Hōnen’s Pure Land Doctrines: an Inquiry into the Interplay between Buddhist Teachings and Institutions
Martin Repp

part 4: Shinran’s More Radical Turn to the Enlightenment Gift as an Involuntary Emergent Property

11 Faith: Its Arising
Alfred Bloom

12 “Rely on the Meaning, Not on the Words”
Shinran’s Methodology and Strategy for Reading Scriptures and Writing the Kyōgyōshinshō
Eisho Nasu

part 5: Formation of a Major Institution: Honganji and its Negotiations with Popular Consciousness

13 From Inspiration to Institution
The Rise of Sectarian Identity in Jōdo Shinshū
James C. Dobbins

14 Shin Buddhist Attitudes towards the Kami
From Shinran to Rennyo
Robert F. Rhodes

15 Popular Pure Land Teachings of the Zenkōji Nyorai and Shinran
Eisho Nasu

16 Stand by Your Founder
Honganji’s Struggle with Funeral Orthodoxy
Mark L. Blum

17 Steadied Ambiguity: the Afterlife in “Popular” Shin Buddhism
Galen Amstutz

18 Ambivalence Regarding Women and Female Gender in Premodern Shin Buddhism
Galen Amstutz

part 6: The Alternative Field: Pure Land Striven for in This World

19 Ippen and Pure Land Buddhist Wayfarers in Medieval Japan
James H. Foard

20 The Shingon Subordinating Fire Offering for Amitābha, “Amida Kei Ai Goma”
Richard K. Payne

21 Breath of Life: the Esoteric Nembutsu
James H. Sanford

22 Jōkei and the Rhetoric of “Other-Power” and “Easy Practice” in Medieval Japanese Buddhism
James L. Ford

part 7: Pure Land Fellowships in War and Peace

23 The Life of Rennyo
A Struggle for the Transmission of Dharma
Yasutomi Shin’ya

24 The Dilemma of Religious Power
Honganji and Hosokawa Masamoto
Michael Solomon

25 Shin Buddhism and Burakumin in the Edo Period
Galen Amstutz

26 Precepts in Japanese Pure Land Buddhism
The Jōdoshū
James C. Dobbins

27 Exemplary Lives
Form and Function in Pure Land Sacred Biography
Michael Bathgate

28 Preaching as Performance
Notes on a Secretive Shin Buddhist Sermon
Clark Chilson

29 The Nianfo in Ōbaku Zen: a Look at the Teachings of the Three Founding Masters
James Baskind

30 Extreme Asceticism, Medicine and Pure Land Faith in the Life of Shuichi Munō (1683–1719)
Paul Groner

part 8: Meiji and Modernity: Political Resettlement and Realignment, Moments of Intellectual Hybridization, Emigration, Collaboration, Postwar Progressivism, Lingering Conservatism

31 Shin Buddhism in the Meiji Period
Mark L. Blum

32 Against Buddhist Unity: Murakami Senshō and His Sectarian Critics
Ryan Ward

33 The Honganji: Guardian of the State (1868–1945)
Minor L. Rogers and Ann T. Rogers

34 Shinran’s Thought in Present-Day Japan
Gerhard Schepers

35 Propagation, Accommodation and Negotiating Social Capital: Jōdo Shinshū Responses to Contemporary Crises
Jørn Borup

36 Family Temples and Religious Learning in Contemporary Japanese Buddhism
Jessica Starling

37 Shin Buddhist Studies and Secularization
Mitsuya Dake

38 Amida and Pure Land within a Contemporary Worldview: From Shinran’s Literal Symbolism to Figurative Symbolism
Kenneth K. Tanaka

39 The Medieval and the Modern in Shin Buddhism
James C. Dobbins

40 Rethinking Acculturation in the Postmodern World
Michihiro Ama

41 Nenbutsu and Meditation: Problems with the Categories of Contemplation, Devotion, Meditation, and Faith
Lisa Grumbach

Index of Personal Names
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