Contribution to Book
Introduction to Buddhist East Asia
Robert H. Scott and James McRae
State University of New York Press
Albany, New York
Suny Series in Asian Studies Development
This chapter introduces the central arguments of Critical Buddhism as a lens by which to view the course of “modern” Buddhism in Japan, particularly as it relates to politics. It traces philosophical and political precedents for Critical Buddhism in the context of Japanese modernity, by focusing on several progressive Buddhist figures movements from mid-Meiji through early Shōwa, including the New Buddhist Fellowship and the Youth League for Revitalizing Buddhism. I argue that previous attempts to centralize criticism as a basic Buddhist precept were unsuccessful in part do to an inability to distinguish the Buddhistic components of their thought and practice, but that the inspiration and central insights of Critical Buddhism and its progressive precedents remain relevant in the twenty-first century.
Shields, James Mark, "A Century of Critical Buddhism in Japan" (2023). Faculty Contributions to Books. 261.
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