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Sacred Biographies in the Buddhist Traditions of South and Southeast Asia (review)

Sacred Biographies in the Buddhist Traditions of South and Southeast Asia (review) Reviews 239 Juliane Schober, ed. Sacred Biographies in the Buddhist Traditions of South and Southeast Asia. Honolulu: U of Hawai‘i P, 1997. 366 pp. ISBN 0- 8248-1699-4, $49.00. The biographical genre is at the very core of the Buddhist tradition, and one of the most prominent and potent modes for propagating the Buddha’s teachings. Indeed, the Buddha’s own life serves as the paradigm for all Buddhists, monks and laity alike; through his life story, the fundamental philosophical and ethical truths known as the dharma are conveyed and humanized. But as the essays in this fine volume attest, the biographical genre in Buddhism extends considerably beyond the specific life of the Buddha, and incorporates the lives of individual monks, lay persons, and kings—serving, as Juliane Schober puts it in her preface, for “mapping diverse realities onto one another,” through which “local cosmologies are integrated into universal ones,” and the pristine Buddhist ideals and modes of practice of the past “are recreated in the present lives of others” (ix). This is an unusually consistent and integrated edited volume, such that one can quite easily read it from start to finish and in the process gain a comprehensive sense of the place http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Biography University of Hawai'I Press

Sacred Biographies in the Buddhist Traditions of South and Southeast Asia (review)

Biography , Volume 23 (1) – Dec 1, 1999

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2000 Biographical Research Center.
ISSN
0162-4962
eISSN
1529-1456

Abstract

Reviews 239 Juliane Schober, ed. Sacred Biographies in the Buddhist Traditions of South and Southeast Asia. Honolulu: U of Hawai‘i P, 1997. 366 pp. ISBN 0- 8248-1699-4, $49.00. The biographical genre is at the very core of the Buddhist tradition, and one of the most prominent and potent modes for propagating the Buddha’s teachings. Indeed, the Buddha’s own life serves as the paradigm for all Buddhists, monks and laity alike; through his life story, the fundamental philosophical and ethical truths known as the dharma are conveyed and humanized. But as the essays in this fine volume attest, the biographical genre in Buddhism extends considerably beyond the specific life of the Buddha, and incorporates the lives of individual monks, lay persons, and kings—serving, as Juliane Schober puts it in her preface, for “mapping diverse realities onto one another,” through which “local cosmologies are integrated into universal ones,” and the pristine Buddhist ideals and modes of practice of the past “are recreated in the present lives of others” (ix). This is an unusually consistent and integrated edited volume, such that one can quite easily read it from start to finish and in the process gain a comprehensive sense of the place

Journal

BiographyUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: Dec 1, 1999

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