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Secrecy's Power – Covert Shin Buddhists in Japan and Contradictions of Concealment - Hawaii Scholarship Online
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Secrecy's Power: Covert Shin Buddhists in Japan and Contradictions of Concealment

Clark Chilson


Shin has long been one of the most popular forms of Buddhism in Japan. As a devotional tradition that emphasizes gratitude and trust in Amida Buddha, it is thought to have little to do with secrecy. Yet for centuries, Shin Buddhists met on secluded mountains, in homes, and in the backrooms of stores to teach their hidden doctrines and hold clandestine rites. Among their adherents was D. T. Suzuki's mother, who took her son to Shin's covert meetings when he was a boy. Even among Shin experts, covert followers were relatively unknown. A serendipitous encounter, however, led to the author's intro ... More

Keywords: secrecy, Shin Buddhism, Japan, Amida, Shin Buddhists, D. T. Suzuki, covert meetings, persecution

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2014 Print ISBN-13: 9780824838393
Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016 DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824838393.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Clark Chilson, author
University of Pittsburgh