Document Type

Book Review

Publication Date

11-2000

Abstract

This is an anthropological study, carried out with love, care, and attention to detail, of the Japanese Sata nuns. Why would modern (Japanese) women want to give up the comforts of modern life, part with their beautiful hair-a powerful symbol of womanhood-and become monastics? What are their self-perceptions and their daily lives like? Arai ably answers these questions. She first takes the reader on a journey through the history of Japanese monastic Buddhist tradition, which began when three women were ordained sometime around the year 590. She then clarifies the modern academic arguments surrounding Dogen's view of women's capacity for enlightenment, and upholds the egalitarian interpretation of Dogen (which is the interpretation held by the nuns). She next lets the reader experience, first hand, the lives of contemporary Soto Zen nuns. By the end of the journey, readers will find themselves moved, their humanity reassured and refreshed

Publication Title

Journal of Asian Studies

Volume

59

Issue

4

First Page

1013

Last Page

1014

DOI

http://dx.doi.org/10.2307/2659241

Required Publisher's Statement

Copyright © 2000 Association for Asian Studies.

Subjects - Topical (LCSH)

Monastic and religious life of women--Japan; Monastic and religious life (Zen Buddhism)--Japan; Religious life--Sgasotgasoshgasu; Buddhist nuns--Japan

Subjects - Names (LCNAF)

Arai, Paula Kane Robinson. Women living Zen

Geographic Coverage

Japan

Genre/Form

reviews (documents)

Type

Text

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

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