The Letters of Chan Master Dahui Pujue

Reddit icon
e-mail icon
Twitter icon
Facebook icon
Google icon
LinkedIn icon
Jeffrey L. Broughton, Elise Yoko Watanabe
Translator(s): 
Jeffrey L. Broughton
  • Oxford, England: 
    Oxford University Press
    , August
     2017.
     408 pages.
     $99.00.
     Hardcover.
    ISBN
    9780190664169.
     For other formats: Link to Publisher's Website.
Review coming soon!

Review by Jason Protass forthcoming.

Description

The Letters of Chan Master Dahui Pujue offers a complete annotated translation, the first into English, of a Chan Buddhist classic, the collected letters of the Southern Song Linji Chan teacher Dahui Zonggao (1089-1163). Addressed to forty scholar-officials, members of the elite class in Chinese society, and to two Chan masters, these letters are dharma talks on how to engage in Buddhist cultivation. Each of the letters to laymen is fascinating as a document directed to a specific scholar-official with his distinctive niche, high or low, in the Song-dynasty social-political landscape, and his idiosyncratic stage of development on the Buddhist path. Dahui is engaging, incisive, and often quite humorous in presenting his teaching of "constantly lifting to awareness the phrase (huatou)," his favored phrases being No (wu) and dried turd. Throughout one's busy twenty-four hours, the practitioner is not to perform any mental operation whatsoever on this phrase, and to "take awakening as the standard."

This epistolary compilation has long constituted a self-contained course of study for Chan practitioners. For centuries, Letters of Dahui has been revered throughout East Asia.

About the Author(s)/Editor(s)/Translator(s): 

Jeffrey L. Broughton is professor emeritus of religious studies at California State University, Long Beach.

Add New Comment

Reading Religion welcomes comments from AAR members, and you may leave a comment below by logging in with your AAR Member ID and password. Please read our policy on commenting.

Log in to post comments