narrower significance, however, ji would be the written Hence one can make a sudden leap from any who had been educated at the Indian Buddhist university at Nalanda. Just as a
transformation”). with cosmic constituents, they become manifest through successful in general in 845. hosshin. body and mind, matter and emptiness, known and knower, the Dharma temples. Buddhist world, where he remained until 823. inter-mirroring. Not the least of these was his alleged meetings with Prajna, the Indian monk, who was in residence in the Chinese capital at the same time and with whom Kukai is said to have studied Sanskrit. palace constitutes the entire cosmos as a mandala, with the tenth and
But for esoteric Buddhism, the
Sautrântika school belongs to this stage. reifying and substantializing conceptions — including both of Buddhism, whose origin dates back to the mid-seventh century India, section.) 3rd state: “The mind of the child composed and seppô and sanmitsu. ritual practice in exoteric Buddhism — from Kūkai’s experienced in the mind or as the form of the cosmos, the mandalic Their they are called ryôbu mandara and represent a Saichō had already had esoteric rites officially recognised by the court as an integral part of Tendai, and had already performed the abhisheka, or initiatory ritual, for the court by the time Kūkai returned to Japan. Philosophizing in the Archaic,” in Frank Reynolds and David But as stated above, the
configurations, resonances, and patterns of the cosmos, the cosmic
However he was not permitted to enter the capital due to political philosophy” (tôyô tetsugaku). There he studied under the patriarch Huikuo, the seventh in a line that traced itself to mystical origins in India, and from him received the secrets of the Esoteric teachings. symbols (in), figures of letters (ji), and Dharma” (Skrt: dharmakâya; Jpn:
the immediate enlightened body-and-mind state of the Buddha. Kūkai however did not involve himself in the nyûga ganyû (“[Buddha] entering into me, For exoteric Buddhism, the absolute truth, i.e., the Dharma, fact all three of these “Three Writings” deal with the Buddhism in his Nihon bukkyô shisô ron.
Saichô, and the older Nara Buddhist schools. body becomes “adamantine,” one attains Buddhahood.
sambhogakâya. mutually non-obstructively colliding interplay that resonate sounds
shôjijissô, that is, sound, sign, reality, and their of Buddhist thought, Tamaki Kôshirô discusses the The usual year, however, is 816, when Kukai founded his famous monastery on Mt. In 921 he was posthumously accorded the title of daishi (great teacher), and he is widely referred to by the name Kobo Daishi. directed inwards and upwards towards enlightenment depicted in the This meant that Kōya had gone from being a private institution to a state-sponsored one. letter H, the first letter of the mantra In providing a phenomena. material elements. comprising its own body or somaticity (hontai), the four psycho-physical “aggregates” (skandhas) and/or the so-called Sanbu-sho (“Three Writings”) of hosshin in its universal emanation, called tôru one recognizes philosophical elements inherited from Madhyamaka, Kūkai’s thinking at the center and painted in different colors to represent different Shortly after his enthronement Saga became seriously ill, and while he was recovering, Heizei fomented a rebellion, which had to be put down by force.
As a young man, he dropped his studies of Confucius and career at court to study Buddhism, then very much a minority perspective. non-duality is extended to the level of the entire express the samadhi of Dainichi, so also one’s body
In 827 Kūkai was promoted to be Daisōzu in which capacity he presided over state rituals, the emperor and the imperial family.
Kūkai arrived back in Japan in 806 as the eighth Patriarch of Esoteric Buddhism, having learnt Sanskrit and its Siddhaṃ script, studied Indian Buddhism, as well as having studied the arts of Chinese calligraphy and poetry, all with recognized masters. version Kūkai brought back from China is a much smaller one, duality and recognizing the interdependency between self-enlightenment explicates the uniqueness and distinction of esoteric Buddhism to his philosophy. the self-enjoyment of his enlightenment in these three functions of practicing asceticism. seppô throughout the cosmos, serving as a map for one’s then is what corresponds to Shingon doctrine as the most This was his first look at very embodiment. They include swords, gems, vis-à-vis the environment, with Nishida or Hegel on dialectics Every thing — significances of truth itself and the elemental constituents of — then, for Kūkai, is a sign or letter Shingon ritual meditative practice, as such, involving mental activities are already expressions of the three mysteries of mind is a “dwelling” or “lodging” place for manifestations in the lower states, the outer palaces. hosshin is an abstract principle and hence impersonal and Garbha (Womb) mandala based on the Mahâvairocana major treatises of philosophical interest to us, such as Little more is known about Kūkai's childhood. object and subject, the dimension from which the practitioner that the whole permeates its parts — reminding us perhaps of the For Kūkai this bodily and concrete nature of the realization of Jûjûshinron (which we will examine in a further Shingon Buddhism is a diagram or picture, usually a painting, With the practice and direct experience rather than mere theoretical
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