differences and similarities…


differences and similarities…

by Robert Crow Conti

(New york)

Dogen, founder of Soto Zen.

Dogen, founder of Soto Zen.

What would be the main differences and similarities between Japanese and Chinese Buddhism?

****my answer****

Japanese Buddhism is very similar to Chinese Buddhism as it came from China. Most great masters who founded Buddhist school in Japan were either Chinese or studied under Chinese masters. For this reason, both types of Buddhism are very similar. For Example, Kōbō-Daishi, the founder of Shingon in Japan, studied in China, at Changan’s Qinglong Monastery (青龍寺).

Dogen, the founder of Soto Zen, studied under Rujing, a master of the Chinese Caodong lineage.

Like most things, though, Japan has given its local touch to Buddhism. That is what they excel at. Import concepts or products and tinker with them until it become purely Japanese.

Some of the major differences are the inclusion of many “gods” related to Hinduism, Taoism and Japanese Shinto.
Pure Land Buddhism took a very different flavor in Japan too, with Amida Nyorai being more than a Buddha. He is almost a god.

Having said this, it is difficult to comment on this as the difference between Buddhist schools are similar to the difference between the different Christian sects: They all basically believe in the same thing. They just differ in opinion as to how to get there. This transcends geography.

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Jun 07, 2012


by: Bronco

Hello Robert…

Whilst we attempt to establish the differences between all Buddhist schools, we appear to lose our way. For me right, now there is no difference, only bias and opinion…

Whatever strikes our awareness, awakens our sleeping knowledge and wisdom from the past. Whatever opens our awareness, never supposedly heard before, is the mystery of intuition, knowing without knowing how we know..Just be…..

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