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Monasticism

University of Pennsylvania

History of Religions of Eastern Origins

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An Investigation Of The Relationship Between Prince ShōToku’S ShōMangyō-Gisho And Two Dunhuang Buddhist Manuscripts: A Debate Over Originality And Canonical Value, Mark Dennis Jan 2019

An Investigation Of The Relationship Between Prince ShōToku’S ShōMangyō-Gisho And Two Dunhuang Buddhist Manuscripts: A Debate Over Originality And Canonical Value, Mark Dennis

Manuscript Studies

This article investigates the relationship between two manuscript fragments discovered in Dunhuang, China referred to as Nai 93 and Tama 24, and the Shōmangyō-gisho, a Buddhist text written in classical Chinese attributed to Japan’s Prince Shōtoku (574-622). Shōtoku is remembered in Japanese history as the country’s first patriarch of Buddhism, revered for his patronage of the nascent faith and his great erudition. His studies under a Korean Buddhist monk led, according to early historical texts, to his composing the Shōmangyō-gisho and two other Buddhist commentaries that have been greatly valued throughout Japanese Buddhist history.

But the discovery of ...