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God, Representations and Symbols of

(7,207 words)

Author(s): Uehlinger, Christoph | Koch, Guntram | Stietencron, Heinrich v. | Kleine, Christoph | Wädow, Gerd
[German Version] I. Terminology – II. Ancient Near East and Old Testament – III. Greco-Roman World – IV. Religions of India – V. Buddhism – VI. Chinese Religions – VII. Japan I. Terminology

Pure Land

(179 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] (Chinese chʾing tʾu, Japanese jōdo), in Mahāyāna Buddhism a land free of earthly defilements, which a buddha or bodhisattva created in fulfillment of his vow to deliver all beings and by virtue of his merits; there he preaches the dharma (Redemption: IX). The most important Pure Land is Amitābha’s Sukhāvatī. To be reborn there is a paramount goal, and not just for adherents of the Pure Land school (Chʾing Tʾu). Other important Pure Lands are those of Akṣobhya, Bhaiṣajyaguru, Avalokiteśvara, and Śakyamuni. The Vimalakīrtisūtra defines the Pure Land not as an ot…

Ch'ing T'u/Jōdo-shū

(439 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] Ch'ing-t'u (Chinese)/Jōdo-shū (Japanese), “School of the Pure Land,” is the name of a major school of East Asian Buddhism (I, 2.d); its goal is rebirth in the “Pure Land” of the Buddha Amitābha. Although the cult was introduced into China in the 2nd century ce, the term itself does not appear until the 7th century. Traditionally a brotherhood of 123 monks and laymen on Mount Lu under Hui Yuan (334–416), founded in 402, is considered the prototype of Chinese Ch'ing-t'u; in fact, however, the teachings concerning Amitābha and his paradise were not popularized and systematized until the 6th century. ¶ T'an Luan (476–542) preached deliverance through the “other-power” of the Buddha Amitābha. The primary means of achieving salvation was meditation on Amitābha and faithful chanting of his name ( nianfo/nemb…


(190 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] (Daishonin; Feb 16, 1222, Kominato, Awa Province – Oct 13, 1282, Ikegami, Musashi Province [now Tokyo]), last of the protagonists of the so-called Japanese reform Buddhism of the 13th century, and founder of the Hokke-shū. Born in humble circumstances, at the age of 11 Nichiren entered a tendai temple, was ordained at 16, and received the monastic name Zeshōbō Renchō. After studying various schools, he became convinced that perfect doctrine was found only in the Lotus-Sūtra. In 1253 he adopted the name…


(295 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] (“orthodox Nichiren school”), the smallest of the Buddhist sects in Japan (III, 5) that are based on Nichiren (Buddhism: I, 2.d). The Nichiren school sees itself in the tradition of Nikkō (1246–1332), one of the six chief students of Nichiren, who left the main temple Kuon-ji in 1290 in the quarrel over Nichiren’s grave, and founded the Taiseki-ji. In 1872 the Taiseki-ji resisted government attempts to unite all Nichiren sects under the leadership of Kuon-ji, and from 1900 called…


(5,978 words)

Author(s): Auffarth, Christoph | Houtman, Cornelis | Frankemölle, Hubert | Lang, Bernhard | Sparn, Walter | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Old Testament – III. New Testament – IV. Church History – V. Dogmatics – VI. Judaism – VII. Islam – VIII. Buddhism – IX. Contemporary Art I. Religious Studies 1. Hell as a place of retribution in the afterlife for those who continually transgress the religiously sanctioned rules of their community is not specifically Christian or monotheistic. But it is also not an idea that springs automatically from the question of how the dead exist (Death). Although hell was long viewed as a…


(255 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph

Hereafter, Concepts of the

(5,151 words)

Author(s): Hutter, Manfred | Janowski, Bernd | Necker, Gerold | Haase, Mareile | Rosenau, Hartmut | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. History of Religions – III. Philosophy of Religion – IV. Art History I. Religious Studies All cultures have concepts of a he…

State and Religion

(2,721 words)

Author(s): Besier, Gerhard | Herms, Eilert | Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] I. The Problem In Western societies, the relationship between the state and religion is determined less by religion’s constitutional status – freedom of religion is a fundamental constitutional right everywhere – than by historical tradition. Where the major confessional bodies were (or still are) state churches, there is still a hierarchy of religions. Without regard to actual religious life, the state gives traditional religions a special status, materially and ideally. In the public mind (at least in Germany), these religions are followed by a clearly secondary descending sequence: Free churches, so-called special communities with distinctive doctrines, sects, syncretistic new religions, Eastern religions, and esoteric or recovery movements (New religious movements, Syncretism). The usual distinction between state churches (Great Britain, Denmark, Greece, Finland) and the so-called cooperation model (Germany, Belgium, Spain, Italy, Austria, Portugal) involves only the major denominations and Jewish communities, not other religions. The so-called separation model really does make it possible for the state to treat all religions e…


(11,861 words)

Author(s): Heller, Birgit | Cancik, Hubert | Liess, Kathrin | Necker, Gerold | Goldberg, Sylvie-Anne | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies and History of Religions – II. Death and the Realm of the Dead in the Old Testament – III. Judaism – IV. New Testament – V. Philosophy – VI. Philosophy of Religion – VII. History of Dogma and Dogmatics – VIII. Ethics – IX. Practical Theology – X. Art – XI. Islam – XII. Buddhism – XIII. Hinduism…


(276 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] (Pāli/Sanskrit: birth narratives), designation for a narrative of an event from one of the earlier lives of the Buddha. Jātaka are considered one of the nine compositional forms ( anga


(5,515 words)

Author(s): Pezzoli-Olgiati, Daria | Waschke, Ernst-Joachim | Leiner, Martin | Rebiger, Bill | Heine, Peter | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Bible – III. History of Doctrine and Dogmatics – IV. Judaism – V. Islam – VI. Buddhism – VII. History of Art and Literature I. Religious Studies The history of the term “paradise” is informative for determining its meaning. The word “paradise” is derived from the ancient Iranian * paridaēza, literally “surrounding wall.” It appears as a loanword in many other languages, for example as the Akkadian pardēsu, the Hebrew פַּרְדֵּס/ pardes or the Greek παράδεισος/ parádeisos. These terms denote an enclosed park or garden (cf. Xeno-¶ phon, Anabasis V…

State Cult

(1,973 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph | Otto, Eckart | Kern, Martin | Pye, Michael
[German Version] I. History of Religions State cults in the narrow sense are religious ceremonies, governed by tradition or law, performed in the name of the state and for its benefit; typically they are addressed to extrasensory powers such as gods, demons, natural numina, or personalized cosmic forces. It is necessary to distinguish cults celebrated regularly at fixed times and place…


(277 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] ̣(Sanskrit, “three baskets”; Pāli tipiṭaka), the three collections of authoritative scriptures in Buddhism (Canon: VII): the Vinayapiṭaka, Sūtrapiṭaka and Abhidharmapiṭaka. The Vinayapiṭaka comprises (1) the Prātimokṣa (penitential formula…


(431 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[German Version] (also called Shakkū, Zenshin; 1173–1262), Japanese monk, considered the founder of the True Pure Land School (Jōdo shinshū; Japan: III, 5). Shinran was born to a family in Hino near Kyoto. At the age of nine, he traveled to Mount Hiei, the center of Buddhist learning (Monasteries: III), where he was ordained by the renowned priest Jien (1155–1225) and studied the teachings of Tendai Shū. He served as a simple temple priest at the Jōgyō-dō, a temple dedicated to the cult of Amitābh…


(223 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph
[English Version] (Sanskrit, »Dreikorb«; Pāli tipiṭaka). Die drei Sammlungen des autoritativen Schrifttums im Buddhismus (Kanon: VII.): Vinayapiṭaka, Sūtrapiṭaka und Abhidharmapiṭaka. Der Vinayapiṭaka besteht aus (1) Prātimokṣa (Beichtformular und Auflistung der für Mönche bzw. Nonnen [Mönchtum: IV.] geltenden Verbote), (2) Karmavācanā (Verfahrensregeln für Rechtshandlungen des Ordens [saṃgha]), (3) Sūtravibhan˙ga (ausführliche Erläuterungen des Buddha zu den im Prātimokṣa aufgelisteten Ve…


(1,725 words)

Author(s): Kleine, Christoph | Otto, Eckart | Kern, Martin | Pye, Michael
[English Version] I. Religionsgeschichtlich S. im engeren Sinne sind durch Tradition oder Gesetzgebung geregelte, im Auftrag, im Namen und zum Wohl des Staates durchgeführte rel. Handlungen, deren Adressaten typischerweise außersinnliche Mächte wie Götter, Dämonen, Naturnumina oder personalisierte kosmische Wirkmächte sind. Es ist z…
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