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Ritualized Writing
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Ritualized Writing: Buddhist Practice and Scriptural Cultures in Ancient Japan

Bryan D. Lowe

Abstract

Transcribing scripture (sutras) represents one of the most central devotional practices in the Buddhist world. Sutra copying functioned as a form of ritualized writing, a practice strategically set apart from more mundane forms through a set of practices and beliefs. This book highlights sutra transcription throughout Asia, but focuses primarily on seventh- through ninth-century Japan, where the practice is particularly well-documented. It shows how scribes engaged in ritual practices related to purification and how patrons held elaborate dedication ceremonies upon the completion of a project. ... More

Keywords: Sutra copying, Nara period, Buddhism, premodern Japan, ritual, Shōsōin, manuscripts, scribes, religion and the state, history of the book

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2017 Print ISBN-13: 9780824859404
Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: September 2017 DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824859404.001.0001

Authors

Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Bryan D. Lowe, author
Vanderbilt University

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