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Table of Contents

Foreward, by Wm. Theodore de Bary Preface Introduction Part One: Life of Kukai 1. Youth 2. Days of Crisis 3. Reunification and Quest 4. Encounter with Master Hui-Kuo 5. Priod of Trial 6. Rise to Eminence 7. Abhiseka Ceremonies at the Takaosanji 8. Founding of Mt. Koya 9. The Toji Period 10. Return to Mt. Koya Part Two: Thought of Kukai 1. Exoteric Buddhism and Esoteric Buddhism Exoteric versus Esorteric Buddhism Esoteric Buddhism within Exoteric Buddhism Shingon Buddhism, the Synthesis of Exoteric Buddhism 2. Essentials of Kukai's Esoteric Buddhist Thought and Practice General Characteristics of Kukai's Esoteric Buddhist Thought Dharmakaya Mahavairocana Tathagata Kukai's Esoteric Buddhist Practice Part Three: Major Works of Kukai 1. Indications of the Goals of the Three Teachings 2. A Memorial Presenting a List of Newly Imported Sutras and Other Items 3. The Difference Between Exoteric and Esoteric Buddhism 4. The Precious Key to the Secret Treasury 5. Attaining Enlightenment in this Very Existence 6. The Meanings of Sound, Word, and Reality 7. The Meanings of the Word Hum 8. The Secret Key to the Heart Sutra Chronological Table Selected Bibliography Index

About the Author

Hakeda was Associate Professor of Japanese in the Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures and Associate Professor of Religion at Columbia University. Ryuichi Abe is the Reischauer Institute Professor of Japanese Religions in the Department of Eas Aisan Languages and Cultures at Harvard University.


Kukai was a polymath who has achieved the status of demigod in popular legend: in part because of his virtuosity as a writer of Chinese, his books are too difficult to read by any but a very few scholars in Japan today. Hakeda's achievement in arriving at these lively and intelligible translations is of the highest order. Choice This book serves two functions remarkably well: being an easy to follow, lucidly written introductory work for the non-initiated, and providing for the expert for the first time in English eight of Kukai's major works. World Literature Today

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