Buddhism in Practice

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Princeton, NJ 1995 Trade paperback New. Trade paperback (US). Glued binding. 640 p. Princeton Readings in Religions (Paperback). Audience: General/trade.

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This anthology illustrates the vast scope of Buddhist practice in Asia, past and present, by presenting a selection of forty-eight translated texts including hagiographies, monastic rules, pilgrimage songs, apocryphal sutras, and didactic tales from India, China, Japan, Korea, Tibet, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Burma. Most of these pieces have never before been translated into a Western language, and each is preceded by a substantial introduction by its translator. Together they are designed to do nothing less than reshape the way in which Buddhism is understood.

These unusual sources provide the reader with a sense of the remarkable diversity of the practices of persons who over the course of 2,500 years have been identified, by themselves or by others, as Buddhists. In this rich variety there are often contradictions, such that the practices of one Buddhist community might seem strange or unfamiliar to another. At the same time, however, there is evidence here of many continuities among the practices of Buddhist cultures widely separated by both history and topography. From "A Hymn of Praise to the Buddha's Good Qualities" through "On Becoming a Buddhist Wizard" to "Death-Bed Testimonials of the Pure Land Faithful," the selections here are an ideal introduction to Buddhism and a source of new insights for scholars.

The second volume in the "Princeton Readings in Religions" series, this new anthology contains 48 selections that illustrate the scope of Buddhist practice in Asia, both past and present. Few have ever been translated into English before and each is introduced by its translator.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Buddhism in Practice . . . constitute[s] a benchmark of where Buddhist studies has been, and where it is going. By endeavoring to break the circularity of the knowledge process, by which we recognize as 'Buddhist' only what we already think of as Buddhist, Lopez has opened a new course for a self-reflexive Buddhology."The Journal of Asian Studies
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691044415
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 7/24/1995
  • Series: Princeton Readings in Religions Series
  • Pages: 640
  • Product dimensions: 6.22 (w) x 9.26 (h) x 1.28 (d)

Table of Contents

Princeton Readings in Religions
Note on Transliteration
Contents by Vehicle
Contents by Country
Introduction 3
1 A Hymn of Praise to the Buddha's Good Qualities 39
2 Consecrating the Buddha 50
3 Sutra on the Merit of Bathing the Buddha 59
4 Reading Others' Minds 69
5 The Prayer of the Original Buddha 80
6 Myoe's Letter to the Island 88
7 The Tathagatagarbha Sutra 92
8 The Whole Universe as a Sutra 107
9 Gotami's Story 113
10 The Great Bliss Queen 139
11 Story of Simhala, the Caravan Leader 151
12 A Prayer for the Long Life of the Dalai Lama 170
13 Chinese Women Pilgrims' Songs Glorifying Guanyin 176
14 A Mahayana Liturgy 183
15 A Discussion of Seated Zen 197
16 The Way to Meditation 207
17 Buddhism and the State in Early Japan 216
18 Original Enlightenment Thought in the Nichiren Tradition 228
19 The Matsumoto Debate 241
20 A Prophecy of the Death of the Dharma 249
21 The Book of Resolving Doubts Concerning the Semblance Dharma 257
22 A Heretical Chinese Buddhist Text 272
23 Eschatology in the Wheel of Time Tantra 284
24 Atisa's A Lamp for the Path to Awakening 290
25 The Advice to Layman Tundila 302
26 The Legend of the Iron Stupa 314
27 Two Tantric Meditations: Visualizing the Deity 318
28 The Story of the Horn Blowing 328
29 A Summary of the Seven Books of the Abhidhamma 336
30 On Becoming a Buddhist Wizard 343
31 Pure Land Buddhist Worship and Meditation in China 359
32 Aryadeva and Candrakirti on Self and Selfishness 380
33 A Modern Sermon on Merit Making 399
34 Saramati's Entering into the Great Vehicle 402
35 Auspicious Things 412
36 Tales of the Lotus Sutra 427
37 Daily Life in the Assembly 455
38 Deaths, Funerals, and the Division of Property in a Monastic Code 473
39 A Rite for Restoring the Bodhisattva and Tantric Vows 503
40 Awakening Stories of Zen Buddhist Women 513
41 The Chinese Life of Nagarjuna 525
42 Atisa's Journey to Sumatra 532
43 Bimba's Lament 541
44 Hagiographies of the Korean Monk Wonhyo 553
45 The Illustrated Biography of Ippen 563
46 Account of the Buddhist Thaumaturge Baozhi 578
47 Buddhist Chaplains in the Field of Battle 586
48 Death-Bed Testimonials of the Pure Land Faithful 592
Index 603
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