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Language in the Buddhist Tantra of Japan : Indic roots of mantra

Author: Richard K Payne
Publisher: London, UK ; New York, NY : Bloomsbury Academic, 2018. ©2018
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Buddhism is often preconceived and stereotyped as a religion of 'mystical silence', but Richard K. Payne argues that language is in fact central to the Buddhist tradition. By examining the use of Japanese Buddhist Tantra and 'extraordinary language', invocations calling on the power of the Buddha, Payne shows that such language was not simply 'cultural baggage' carried by Buddhist practitioners from South to East  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Richard K Payne
ISBN: 9781350037267 1350037265
OCLC Number: 1031418631
Description: x, 238 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: Extraordinary language use --
Is language communication?: extraordinary language in the face of philosophy of language --
Indic understandings of language: from Vedas to tantra --
East Asian understandings of language --
Emptiness and cosmogenesis in the Tantric Buddhism of Japan --
The clear light mantra homa: religious agency in medieval Japanese Buddhist ritual --
The authority of the speech of the Buddha: aural dimensions of epistemology --
Dhara'i in the Lotus Sutra: Indic context for the power of words --
Ajikan: visualizing the syllable A.
Responsibility: Richard K. Payne.

Abstract:

"Buddhism is often preconceived and stereotyped as a religion of 'mystical silence', but Richard K. Payne argues that language is in fact central to the Buddhist tradition. By examining the use of Japanese Buddhist Tantra and 'extraordinary language', invocations calling on the power of the Buddha, Payne shows that such language was not simply 'cultural baggage' carried by Buddhist practitioners from South to East Asia. Rather, such language was a key element in the propagation of new forms of belief and practice. Whereas Western approaches to the philosophy of language are grounded in language as a form of communication, this book argues that it is the Indian and East Asian philosophies of language that shed light on the use of language in meditative and ritual practices in Japan. It also explains why it was conceived as an effective means of progress on the path from delusion to 'awakening'"--

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This is a magisterial work that brilliantly distils and presents decades of exploring and encountering the nuances and profundity of the "extraordinary language" of Japanese Buddhism. Beautifully Read more...

 
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