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The Institute of Buddhist Studies would like to thank all the panelists, participants, and guests who made the 2010 Buddhism Without Borders Conference such a wonderful success!

Overview | Conference Schedule | Paper Abstracts | Film Screening |

Buddhism without Borders: Contemporary Developments of Buddhism in the West

at the Institute of Buddhist Studies
Berkeley, California
March 18 - 21, 2010

Panel III: Transnational Buddhisms, 2:00 - 5:00

Syncretism and Syntax: An Examination of Yogi Chen's Christian Homas

Richard K. Payne, Institute of Buddhist Studies

Yogi Chen passed away in Nov. 1987. He combined Tibetan tantra with other forms of Chinese Buddhism, including Chan and Pure Land, and taught in Berkeley for a period of time. His work is now propagated by Yutang Lin of El Cerrito, California, including the publication (both in print and now online) of his collected works. Chen's collected works include varied teachings and practices, covering a wide range of familiar Buddhist themes. Also included are several homa ritual manuals, again for a range of familiar Buddhist figures, such as Śākyamuni, and Bhaiṣajyaguru. But also included are two homas, one for "the Five Saints of Christianity" and one for Jesus. A syntactic analysis of these two in relation to other homa ritual manuals in the Chen corpus will attempt to explicate processes of ritual adaptation as part of the movement of Buddhism across cultural boundaries. This will provide a test case for the thesis proposed in other studies that ritual structure is the slowest of all ritual elements to change.

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