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Making Saints in Modern China$
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David Ownby, Vincent Goossaert, and Ji Zhe

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190494568

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190494568.001.0001

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Chan Master Xuyun

Chan Master Xuyun

The Embodiment of an Ideal, The Transmission of a Model

3 (p.99) Chan Master Xuyun
Making Saints in Modern China

Daniela Campo

Oxford University Press

This chapter chronicles the life and career of the Buddhist master Xuyun, best known for his painstaking monastic reconstruction of the many Chan Buddhist institutions that had been abandoned over the course of the final decades of the nineteenth century in the wake of the mid-century Taiping Rebellion. Xuyun rebuilt both the physical buildings of the monasteries as well as the rules of monastic discipline (Vinaya), in the process becoming one of the best-known Buddhist monks in modern Chinese history. Campo painstakingly analyzes how Xuyun’s hagiography was crafted—largely by his disciples—in such a way as to conform with traditional Buddhist models of such texts, thus suggesting the relevance of Xuyun’s life and example to the modern era, although Xuyun’s lessons proved difficult to apply to conditions under the Communist regime.

Keywords:   Xuyun, Chan Buddhism, Hagiography, Vinaya, Monastic Reconstruction

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