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The Oxford Handbook of Buddhist Practice

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2022-06-03
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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Popular representations of Buddhism often depict it as spiritual, disembodied, and largely devoid of ritual. Yet embodiment, materiality, emotion, and gender shape the way most Buddhists engage with their traditions. The essays within The Oxford Handbook of Buddhist Practice push beyond traditional representations of Buddhism as divided into static schools and traditions, highlighting instead the contested and negotiated character of individual and group identities.

This volume will serve as a corrective to the common misconception that Buddhist practice is limited to seated meditation and that ritualized activities are not an integral dimension of authoritative Buddhist practice. Essays in this handbook explore the transformational aims of practices that require practitioners to move, gesture, and emote in prescribed ways, including the ways that scholars' own embodied practices are integral to their research methodology. Authors foreground the role of the body, examining how the senses, gender, specific emotions, and material engagements impact religious experience. They highlight, as well, the multiplicity of methods and theoretical perspectives that scholars of Buddhism use in their research and writing, including field-based, textual, and historical approaches. Given the fluidity and diversity of Buddhist practices, the question that animates this volume is: What makes a given practice Buddhist?

Author Biography

Paula Arai is Professor of Buddhist Studies at Louisiana State University, holding the Urmila Gopal Singhal Professorship in Religions of India. She is author of Painting Enlightenment: Healing Visions of the Heart Sutra--The Buddhist Art of Iwasaki Tsuneo, Women Living Zen: Japanese Buddhist Nuns,
and Bringing Zen Home: The Healing Heart of Japanese Buddhist Women's Rituals. Her research has received a range of support, including from Fulbright and the American Council of Learned Societies. She has curated exhibits of Iwasaki's Heart Sutra paintings at the Museum of Art at Louisiana State
University, the Crow Collection of Asian Art in Dallas, and the Morikami Museum in Delray Beach Florida.

Kevin Trainor is Professor of Religion at the University of Vermont. His work has centered on Buddhist relic practices in South Asia, highlighting the centrality of material mediations of the Buddha's presence and the importance of embodied practices in the formation and dissemination of early
Buddhist traditions in India and Sri Lanka. His publications, as author or editor, include Relics, Ritual and Representation in Buddhism: Rematerializing the Sri Lankan Theravada Tradition, Embodying the Dharma: Buddhist Relic Veneration in Asia, co-edited with David Germano, Buddhism: The
Illustrated Guide, and Relics in Comparative Perspective

Table of Contents

Introduction: Embodiment and Sense Experience
Kevin Trainor and Paula Arai

Regional Perspectives
Chapter 2. Practice in South Asia
Miranda Shaw

Chapter 3. Practice in Southeast Asia
Nathan McGovern

Chapter 4. Practice in East Asia
Paula Arai and Eun-su Cho

Chapter 5. Practice in Central Asia/Himalayas
Todd Lewis

Chapter 6. Practice in Europe and North America
Scott Mitchell

Chapter 7. Globalized Forms of Practice
Inken Prohl

Material Mediations
Chapter 8. Relics and Images
John Strong

Chapter 9. The Agency of Images
Susan Huntington

Chapter 10. Texts and Rituals
Natalie Gummer

Chapter 11. Interactions with Built Environments
Abhishek Amar

Chapter 12. Interactions with "Natural" Environments
Julia Shaw

Bodies in Transition
Chapter 13. Buddhist Healing Practices
Sienna Craig

Chapter 14. Pilgrimage
Ian Reader

Chapter 15. Dance as Vajrayana Practice
Miranda Shaw

Chapter 16. Buddhist Death Practices
Margaret Gouin

Body-Mind Transformations
Chapter 17. Aural Practices of Chanting & Protection
Mahinda Deegalle

Chapter 18. Pure Land Practices
Charles Jones

Chapter 19. Koan Practice
Jeff Shore

Human & Nonhuman Interactions
Chapter 20. Practices of Veneration & Offering
Jeffrey Samuels

Chapter 21. Ritual Identification and Purification in Esoteric Practice
Richard K. Payne

Chapter 22. Heavenly Rebirth and Buddhist Soteriology
Stephen Jenkins

Domestic and Monastic Practices
Chapter 23. Women's Ordination
Hiroko Kawanami

Chapter 24. Monastic Authority in Medieval Japan
Lori Meeks

Chapter 25. Monastic Discipline and Local Practice
Vesna Wallace

Chapter 26. Disciplining the Body-Mind
Charles Korin Pokorny

Chapter 27. Home Altars
Linda Ho Peché

Chapter 28. Calendrical, Life-cycle, and Periodic Rituals
Jonathan Walters

Chapter 29. Food Practices
Lisa Grumbach

Modernities and Emergent Forms of Practice
Chapter 30. Nation-State & Monastic Identity
Tom Borchert

Chapter 31. Tree Ordination & Global Sustainability
Susan Darlington

Chapter 32. an embodied dharma of race, gender, and sexuality
Jasmine Syedullah

Chapter 33. Buddhist Chaplaincy
Jitsujo T. Gauthier

Chapter 34. Buddhist and Non-Buddhist Practitioner Relations
Elizabeth Harris

Chapter 35. Internet-based Practices
Louise Connelly

Chapter 36. Contemplative Science and Buddhist Science
John D. Dunne

Chapter 37. Seeing Through Mindfulness Practices
Erik Braun

Contributor Bios
Thematic Index

Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

The Used, Rental and eBook copies of this book are not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.

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