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Monday, August 19, 2013

The Five-Colored Clouds of Mount Wutai: Poems from Dunhuang 五台山

Author:
Mary Anne Cartelli

Publisher:
Brill

Publication Year:
2012

Abstract:

In The Five-Colored Clouds of Mount Wutai: Poems from Dunhuang, Mary Anne Cartelli examines a set of poems from the Dunhuang manuscripts about Mount Wutai, the most sacred mountain in Chinese Buddhism. Dating from the Tang and Five Dynasties periods, they reflect the mountain’s transformation into the home of the bodhisattva Mañjuśrī, and provide important literary evidence for the development of Buddhism in China. This interdisciplinary study analyzes the poems using Buddhist scriptures and pilgrimage records, as well as the contemporaneous wall-painting of Mount Wutai in Dunhuang cave 61. The poems demonstrate how the mountain was created as a sacred Buddhist space, as their motifs reflect the cosmology associated with the mountain by the Tang dynasty, and they vividly portray the experience of the pilgrim traveling through a divinely empowered landscape.

Table of Contents:

1 Ascending and Wandering: Introduction 1 --
Sacred Mountains in Ancient China 3 --
Dunhuang and the Dunhuang Caves 8 --
Dunhuang Literature 10 --
Dunhuang and Mount Wutai 12 --
Mountains in Early Chinese Poetry 14 --
About the Book 22 --

2 The Clear and the Cold: Mount Wutai 27 --
Early Literature on Mount Wutai 27 --
Early Legends about Mount Wutai 29 --
Chinese Emperors and Mount Wutai 31 --
Mañjusri and the Chinese Buddhist Scriptures 37 --
The Mañjusri-parinirvana sutra 41 --
Mount Wutai as a Manifestation of the Buddhist Doctrine 46 --
Early Chinese Poetry on Mount Wutai 49 --
The Mount Wutai Poetry of the Dunhuang Manuscripts 53 --

3 The Hall of the Great Sage: The Songs of Mount Wutai 57 --
The Hall of the Great Sage 59 --
I Ascend the Eastern Terrace 66 --
I Ascend the Northern Terrace 71 --
I Ascend the Central Terrace 74 --
I Ascend the Western Terrace 78 --
I Ascend the Southern Terrace 82 --

4 The Land of Vaidurya: Eulogy on Mount Wutai 87 --
Eulogy on Mount Wutai 90 --

5 Inconceivable Light: Eulogy on Mount Wutai 121 --
The Pure Land School 122 --
The Pure Land Monk Fazhao 124 --
Eulogy on Mount Wulai 129 --

6 The Gold-Colored World: Eulogy on the Holy Regions of Mount Wutai 147 --
Eulogy on the True Countenance of the Great Sage 149 --
Eulogy on Samantabhadra 153 --
The Eastern Terrace 155 --
The Northern Terrace 158 --
The Central Terrace 159 --
The Western Terrace 161 --
The Southern Terrace 163 --
The Holy Region of the Vajra Grotto 165 --
The Auspicious Stupa of King Asoka 167 --
Eulogy on the Physical Body of Rahula 169 --
A Vision of Sutra Recitation by the Vajra Grotto 170 --

7 Word and Image: The Mount Wutai Wall Painting at Dunhuang 175 --
Map or Painting? 176 --
Iconography and Imagery in Cave 61 180 --
Mountain as Icon 192 --

8 Poetry as a Buddhist Matter: Conclusion 195 --
Transmission of the Vision 199 --
Literati Poets and Mount Wutai 202 --

For the Purpose of Salvation 204.

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