Shingon in Taiwan?

Shingon in Taiwan?

Postby Alfredo » Sun Oct 13, 2013 4:01 pm

How many Shingon temples are there in Taiwan today? I know they existed during the era of Japanese rule. Have any of them survived as Shingon temples, or were they all converted / reverted to Chinese ones?
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Re: Shingon in Taiwan?

Postby Indrajala » Mon Oct 14, 2013 5:51 am

There's Kōyasan-affiliated teachers in Taipei and Gaoxiong. The Shingon temples from before the war are just for sightseeing it seems. There's almost no practice that goes on in them. I used to live a stone's throw from one in Taipei.

There's also reformed Zhenyan (Shingon) groups which trace themselves to Kōyasan and Japan in the last century, but have reformed doctrine and practices. One of them is in Taizhong and it has quite a following.

I don't believe the reformed groups have a stamp of approval from Japan, though it doesn't seem they care so much.

The master in Taizhong told me in person he thinks what they're presently teaching at Kōyasan is not Mikkyō. That's a pretty provocative statement to say the least, but nevertheless his group is flourishing in Taiwan and perhaps even Hong Kong. He was innovative in combining the two primary Shingon maṇḍalas into one. His group is open to foreigners, though you'd need to speak and read Chinese.
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Re: Shingon in Taiwan?

Postby Yuren » Thu Feb 12, 2015 3:47 pm

Indrajala wrote:There's Kōyasan-affiliated teachers in Taipei and Gaoxiong. The Shingon temples from before the war are just for sightseeing it seems. There's almost no practice that goes on in them. I used to live a stone's throw from one in Taipei.

There's also reformed Zhenyan (Shingon) groups which trace themselves to Kōyasan and Japan in the last century, but have reformed doctrine and practices. One of them is in Taizhong and it has quite a following.

I don't believe the reformed groups have a stamp of approval from Japan, though it doesn't seem they care so much.

The master in Taizhong told me in person he thinks what they're presently teaching at Kōyasan is not Mikkyō. That's a pretty provocative statement to say the least, but nevertheless his group is flourishing in Taiwan and perhaps even Hong Kong. He was innovative in combining the two primary Shingon maṇḍalas into one. His group is open to foreigners, though you'd need to speak and read Chinese.


Heve you heard of this: http://www.mantrabright.org/ ? It looks legit at first sight, but then if you go to "Non-Mantra Buddhist... and Complementary" links (on the left side), you find interesting links.
Such as "Quantum Touch" faith healing and even a link to "The Secret" (the New Age book that teaches people that whatever they desire strong enough, the Universe will make it happen.)
How the hell did that go into the links of a temple that claims to be in the lineage of Shingon Buddhism? I'm very confused.
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Re: Shingon in Taiwan?

Postby jake » Sat Feb 14, 2015 4:06 am

Yuren wrote:Heve you heard of this: http://www.mantrabright.org/ ? It looks legit at first sight, but then if you go to "Non-Mantra Buddhist... and Complementary" links (on the left side), you find interesting links....How the hell did that go into the links of a temple that claims to be in the lineage of Shingon Buddhism? I'm very confused.


Because it isn't Shingon Buddhism... see, from their website:

He evolved and differentiated from Shingon, finally created "Kong Ming Stream 光明流" and became the "1st Founding Bhisoka Acharya" himself, this marked the official inception of "Mantra Bright Buddhism 佛教真言宗光明流" in Taiwan, Hong Kong and China.
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Re: Shingon in Taiwan?

Postby Acala » Sun Feb 15, 2015 4:36 pm

jake wrote:
Yuren wrote:Heve you heard of this: http://www.mantrabright.org/ ? It looks legit at first sight, but then if you go to "Non-Mantra Buddhist... and Complementary" links (on the left side), you find interesting links....How the hell did that go into the links of a temple that claims to be in the lineage of Shingon Buddhism? I'm very confused.


Because it isn't Shingon Buddhism... see, from their website:

He evolved and differentiated from Shingon, finally created "Kong Ming Stream 光明流" and became the "1st Founding Bhisoka Acharya" himself, this marked the official inception of "Mantra Bright Buddhism 佛教真言宗光明流" in Taiwan, Hong Kong and China.


Not that simple, but, I also would not categorize them as Shingon. In fact, I would call them Contemporary Chinese Zhenyan 現代漢傳真言宗. This sect is--currently--the first known instance of this religious movement, which uses Shingon to revive (as they see it) Tang Dynasty Zhenyan. A number of attempts were made...but none stuck. This one has and has spread from Taiwan to Hong Kong, Malaysia and even the West. There are other sects of Contemporary Chinese Zhenyan (some rival, some related, some are even offshoots).

Here is a short article on this group: https://www.academia.edu/10356498/Buddhist_Master_Wuguangs_1918_2000_Taiwanese_Web_of_the_Colonial_Exilic_and_Han

There are, currently, two more articles in the press (about an offshoot of this sect, though they do touch upon this sect somewhat) and a dissertation being written about this sect's founder, Wuguang. Wuguang grew up under Japanese rule in Taiwan, then later traveled to Koyasan and became a Shingon acarya. He founded his sect after returning to Taiwan.

It should also be noted that Wuguang was a teacher of Shinzen Young (look on google books).

But I would not say "because they are not Shingon, you find links to pop-spirituality." The exact website you posted is run out of Hong Kong (hence the English) and rather than being an official sort of online presence, it just happens to be run by one of the members who knows English and very basic web design. That person clearly likes the Secret :ugeek: If you notice, there is no updated ritual schedule or anything like that. They know the website is not all that great.
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