Women Living Zen

Women Living Zen : Japanese Soto Buddhist Nuns

3.63 (11 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

In this study, based on both historical evidence and ethnographic data, Paula Arai shows that nuns were central agents in the foundation of Buddhism in Japan in the sixth century. They were active participants in the Soto Zen sect, and have continued to contribute to the advancement of the sect to the present day. Drawing on her fieldwork among the Soto nuns, Arai demonstrates that the lives of many of these women embody classical Buddhist ideals. They have chosen to lead a strictly disciplined monastic life over against successful careers and the unconstrained contemporary secular lifestyle. In this, and other respects, they can be shown to stand in stark contrast to their male counterparts.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 256 pages
  • 162.6 x 238.3 x 23.1mm | 625.97g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • New.
  • 18 halftones, 1 line illustration
  • 019512393X
  • 9780195123937
  • 2,043,360

Review quote

This is an anthropological study, carried out with love, care, and attention to detail...By the end of the journey, readers will find themselves moved, their humanity reassured and refreshed. * Journal of Asian Studies * Arai's sensitive first-hand account is at times emotional, but the reflexive recollections that derive from her personal experiences and interactions with the nuns are insightful and well documented....the book is valuable in providing us with a different mode of appreciation in order to understand the position of women living in another religious and cultural context. * Japanese Journal of Religious Studies * A long overdue corrective to the androcentric scholarship that has ignored Zen nuns' importance . . . This very readable book is ideal for classroom use. * Religious Studies Review * ...a long overdue corrective to the androcentric scholarship that has ignored Zen nuns' importance.... This very readable book is ideal for classroom use. * Religious Studies Review * ...a long overdue corrective to the androcentric scholarship that has ignored Zen nuns' importance.... This very readable book is ideal for classroom use. * Religious Studies Review *show more

Table of contents

Prologue ; 1. Introduction ; 2. Historical Background ; 3. Twentieth-Century Leadership ; 4. The Monastic Practices of Zen Nuns ; 5. Motivations, Commitments, and Self-Perceptions ; 6. Conclusion: Innovators for the Sake of Tradition ; Endnotes ; Appendix A. Questionnaire ; Appendix B. Glossary of Japanese Termsshow more

Rating details

11 ratings
3.63 out of 5 stars
5 9% (1)
4 64% (7)
3 9% (1)
2 18% (2)
1 0% (0)
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