Chapter

The Middle Period, Part II

Steven Heine

in Did Dogen Go to China?

Published in print June 2006 | ISBN: 9780195305708
Published online May 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199784776 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195305701.003.0005
 The Middle Period, Part II

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This chapter discusses the question of why Dōgen left Kyoto for Echizen in the summer of 1243, perhaps the most significant yet most mysterious event that transpired at the midpoint of his career. Reasons for the move are explored through three theories: the Withdrawal Hypothesis, the Desperation Hypothesis, and the Hakusan Tendai and Hakusan Shinkō Hypotheses. An analysis of the sequence of Dōgen’s writings clearly shows that it was during this crucial and extremely challenging juncture that he began eulogizing Ju-ching in a heightened manner, cultivated an interest in Ch’an models, and began moving towards jōdō style sermons.

Keywords: Echizen; Eiheiji; Hakusan Shinkō Hypothesis; Hakusan Tendai Hypothesis; jōdō; Ju-ching

Chapter.  13255 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Buddhism

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