Contextualizing the sutra within a milieu of intense religious and cultural experimentation, this volume unravels the sudden rise of
Diamond Sutra devotion in the Tang dynasty against the backdrop of a range of social, political, and literary activities. Through the translation and exploration of a substantial body of narratives extolling the efficacy of the sutra, it explores the complex social history of lay Buddhism by focusing on how the laity might have conceived of the sutra and devoted themselves to it. Corroborated by various sources, it reveals the cult’s effect on medieval Chinese religiosity in the activities of an empowered laity, who modified and produced parasutraic texts, prompting the monastic establishment to accommodate to the changes they brought about.
Fozu tongji by Zhipan (ca. 1220-1275) is a key text of Chinese Buddhist historiography. In the present volume Thomas Jülch presents his translation of the first five juan of the massive annalistic part. Rich annotations clarify the backgrounds to the historiographic contents, presented by Zhipan in a highly essentialized style. For the historical traditions the sources Zhipan refers to are meticulously identified. In those cases where the accounts presented are inaccurate or imprecise, Jülch points out how the relevant matter is depicted in the sources Zhipan relies on. With this carefully annotated translation of
Fozu tongji, juan 34-38, Thomas Jülch enables an indepth understanding of a key text of Chinese Buddhist historiography.
Buddhism in China gathers together for the first time the most central and influential papers of the great scholar of Chinese Buddhism, Erik Zürcher, presenting the results of his career-long profound studies following on the 1959 publication of his landmark
The Buddhist Conquest of China. The translation and language of Buddhist scriptures in China, Buddhist interactions with Daoist traditions, the activities of Buddhists below elite social levels, continued interactions with Central Asia and lands to the west, and typological comparisons with Christianity are only some of the themes explored here. Presenting some of the most important studies on Buddhism in China, especially in the earlier periods, ever published, it will thus be of interest to a wide variety of readers.