OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS

Women Living Zen: Japanese Soto Buddhist Nuns

ISBN : 9780195123937

Price(incl.tax): 
¥17,710
Author: 
Paula Kane Robinson Arai
Pages
272 Pages
Format
Hardcover
Size
163 x 243 mm
Pub date
Jul 1999
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In this study, based on both historical evidence and ethnographic data, Paula Arai shows that nuns were central agents in the foundation of Buddhism in Japan in the sixth century. They were active participants in the Soto Zen sect, and have continued to contribute to the advancement of the sect to the present day. Drawing on her fieldwork among the Soto nuns, Arai demonstrates that the lives of many of these women embody classical Buddhist ideals. They have chosen to lead a strictly disciplined monastic life over against successful careers and the unconstrained contemporary secular lifestyle. In this, and other respects, they can be shown to stand in stark contrast to their male counterparts.

Index: 

Prologue
1. Introduction
2. Historical Background
3. Twentieth-Century Leadership
4. The Monastic Practices of Zen Nuns
5. Motivations, Commitments, and Self-Perceptions
6. Conclusion: Innovators for the Sake of Tradition
Endnotes
Appendix A. Questionnaire
Appendix B. Glossary of Japanese Terms

About the author: 

Paula Kane Robinson Arai, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and East Asian Studies, Vanderbilt University

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