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A History Of Japanese Buddhism Essay

771 words - 4 pages

This sect would have melded particularly well with Shinto and other indigenous religions because they preached the same philosophies. The Kegon sect held that everything in the universe is interrelated and interconnected and that as a giant, interconnected web, the universe is practically an enormous ecosystem where nothing is separate or independent, and nothing can take place without reflecting upon something else (Reynolds,N.p.). The emperor at the time, Shomu, was said to consider it as a possible approach to having a firmer hand on his people, because of the totalistic world view that it offers (Reynolds,N.p.). This would emphasize loyalty to their peers, to their loved ones, and most ...view middle of the document...

It was because of this vast network of schools that the government’s vast expenditure on temples and monasteries, intended to support the new legal system, that the government eventually met its downfall. So it was, that as the Nara period came to an end, these 6 schools of Buddhism began to diminish and coalesce into the new Buddhist sects of Japan with the dawn of the Heian era in 794.
In the Heian Era as compared to the Nara period, there were only two new schools of Buddhism that emerged from the ashes of the previous era, the Tendai sect and the Shingon sect. In 805 C.E., a monk named Saicho returned from China bearing a copy of the Tendai texts, and built himself a monastery on top of Mount Hiei, from which he facilitated the spread of his new Tendai school (“Japanese Buddhism,1). The Tendai sect advocates that enlightenment, or rather the ability to attain enlightenment is intrinsic in all things. This made it very popular because it made it much easier to achieve enlightenment than in Mahayana Buddhism(“A view”,12). Also, for the first time since the religion had spread from China, it had put the power in the hands of the people, advocating for them to live much freer lives. It was also heavily...

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