Medieval Japan’s Unique Interpretation of Monastic Discipline and the Precepts

UBC Buddhist Studies Forum and UBC’s Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Program in Buddhism and Contemporary Society proudly presents a lecture by Prof. Paul Groner (University of Virginia, Emeritus; Stanford University, Shinnyo-en Visiting Professor)

Medieval Japan’s Unique Interpretation of Monastic Discipline and the Precepts

Date and time: May 30, 2016, 4:00-5:00pm

Venue:  Asian Centre Room 604

Medieval Japanese Buddhism was dominated by the Tendai School, but Tendai monks often were not celibate, drank alcohol, and ate meat, behaviors that were strikingly different from their Chinese and Korean counterparts.  In this lecture, Professor Groner, a world authority on Japanese Tendai Buddhism and East Asian vinaya (Buddhist precepts) traditions, will look at some of the doctrinal defenses Japanese monks used for these striking differences.  Although some may simply attribute such differences to a degenerate view of Buddhism, many Tendai monks sought to define their status as serious Buddhists.  The lecture will conclude by investigating some of the doctrinal justifications for such behaviors as killing.