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Amoghavajra

(705—774)


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(705–74).

A native of south India.Amoghavajra is considered the sixth patriarch of esoteric Buddhism in China. He was also a prolific translator. He became a Buddhist novice at the age of 13, arrived in Lo-yang two years later, in 720, and received full ordination there in 724. He studied esoteric rituals and texts with Vajrabodhi until the latter's death in 741, at which time he left China and spent five years travelling in India and Sri Lanka.collecting new texts which he brought back to China in 746. His skills as a rainmaker and the effectiveness of his amulets in protecting the emperors assured his livelihood in the capital, and he devoted a great deal of time and energy to translating the texts he had brought back to China. In 771 he presented a petition to the throne asking that 77 scriptures in 101 scrolls that he had translated be added to the canon of scriptures. His disciple Hui-kuo became his successor and the seventh patriarch of esoteric Buddhism, and Hui-kuo in turn recognized Kūkai, who ultimately transmitted the esoteric teachings to Japan and founded the Shingon (or Mantra) school there.

Subjects: Buddhism.


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