During the early thirteenth century, a story began to appear within texts associated with the Chan 禪 Buddhist movement, which portrays an encounter between the eminent transcendent Lü Dongbin 呂洞賓 and the Chan monk Huanglong Huiji 黃龍誨機 that results in Lü abandoning his alchemical techniques of self-cultivation and taking up the practice of Chan. This article traces the development of this tale across a number of Buddhist sources of the late imperial period, and also examines the ways in which later Buddhist and Daoist authors understood the story and utilized it in advancing their own polemical claims.
Au début du treizième siècle apparaît dans les textes du bouddhisme Chan un récit qui met en scène une rencontre entre le célèbre immortel Lü Dongbin et le moine Chan Huanglong Huiji. Au terme de cette rencontre, Lü abandonne ses pratiques alchimiques de perfectionnement de soi et adopte celle de la méditation Chan. Le présent article retrace le développement de ce thème narratif au travers des sources bouddhiques de la fin de l’époque impériale, et examine la manière dont des auteurs bouddhistes et taoïstes ont compris le récit et l’ont manipulé en fonction de leurs propres objectifs polémiques.
This article describes a Daoist salvific ritual called jilian 祭鍊, “oblatory refinement,” as presented within a ritual manual written by Zheng Sixiao 鄭思肖 (1241–1318). Zheng’s formulation of this ritual and his extensive commentary on its individual elements show that he regards this ritual not only as a means of achieving salvation for others, but also as a complete system of self-cultivation that is capable of enabling the practitioner’s self-apotheosis. After discussing the historical background of the ritual and describing its various stages, I analyze Zheng’s approach to ritual practice and his understanding of the relationship between ritual and self-cultivation, both of which are characterized by his emphasis on the quality of “sincerity” (cheng 誠). Ultimately, I argue that the Daoist notion of an “inner,” cognitive and affective dimension of ritual practice points to useful ways of supplementing contemporary theoretical understandings of ritual that focus primarily, if not exclusively, on the formal aspects and social contexts of ritual activities.
The excerpts below were selected to introduce a number of disparate genres and types of discourses about healing, illness, and cure that are embedded within the Chinese Buddhist canon. They include an excerpt from a monastic disciplinary code concerning the storage of medicines, a scripture with a story of an encounter between a bodhisattva and a famous physician, a liturgy dedicated to a major healing deity, an author’s advice to doctors from a Buddhist perspective, and a devotional verse that plays on medical metaphors. Taken together, they indicate some of the diversity of perspectives and approaches of Buddhist materials and suggest the potential importance of often-overlooked Buddhist materials for the study of Asian medicine.