Institution: Ghent University
Department: Centre for Buddhist Studies


Van Custem, Laurent

Van Custem, Laurent

Laurent Van Cutsem is a PhD researcher at the Ghent Centre for Buddhist Studies (Special Research Fund, Ghent University, Belgium) where he works under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Christoph Anderl and Prof. Dr. Bart Dessein. His external advisors are Prof. Dr. Marcus Bingenheimer (Temple University) and Prof. Dr. Christian Wittern (Kyōto University).

He studied History at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (2013, Magna cum laude), where he first came in touch with Religious studies through a minor in “Sciences des religions et de la laïcité”. He holds an MA in Religious Studies from the Université catholique de Louvain (2015, Summa cum laude), where he specialized in the field of Mahāyāna Buddhist philosophy, Chán/Zen hermeneutics and the Kyōto School under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Philippe Cornu, Prof. Dr. Bernard Stevens, and Prof. Dr. Jean Leclercq.

His current research project investigates how Chán Buddhist circles of the 10th and 11th centuries “thought and wrote” (cf. McRae 2000: 53) about the concept of Buddha-nature in early “Records of the Transmission of the Lamp” (ch. chuándēnglù 傳燈錄). He is also interested in pre-modern Chinese Buddhism, Mahāyāna Buddhist philosophy in China, medieval Chinese syntax and Chinese literature in general. At Ghent University, Laurent is also a contributor to the Ghent Database of Medieval Chinese.

For more information, see his profile on Ghent University’s website: