Special Exhibition: Soyen Shaku and Modern Japan, June 4 - August 6 The Former Pupil of Yukichi Fukuzawa who Transmitted Zen to the World
June 11, 2018 Keio University
A special exhibition for the centennial Buddhist memorial of Soyen Shaku (1860-1919) will be held to reflect on the life of this Buddhist priest who introduced Zen (meditation) to the wider world, hosted by Keio University in conjunction with the Enkaku-ji Temple of the Rinzai Sect at which Shaku served as Chief Abbot.
Soyen Shaku was widely respected in the Meiji (1868-1912) and Taisho (1912-1926) periods, and gained the trust of many influential figures in the worlds of politics and culture, with his mentoring of Natsume Soseki in "Zazen"seated meditation being particularly noteworthy. Around 100 items tracing the course of Soyen Shaku’s life will be on display at this exhibition, with an emphasis on materials from the youth of this peerless Zen monk who turned his gaze from modern Japan onto the wider world. These include materials associated with his time at Keio University which he was attending in spite of the opposition of his Zen master; those from his studies of the Pali language and of Buddhism during the time he spent in British Ceylon (present-day Sri Lanka); materials from the historical interfaith dialogue of the first World’s Parliament of Religions held in Chicago in 1893 at which he represented Japan; and from his time serving as a battlefield chaplain during the Russo-Japanese war. A Special Talk and Zazen Meditation Workshops will also be held. We welcome the inclusion of this information in events columns and any other press coverage.
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