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The Life Of Qisong

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Chapter Summary

This chapter follows the dramatic arc of Qisong's life, to his journey from obscurity at the edges of the empire to fame and triumph at its center. Historical material generally reaches through a few highly predictable patterns of preservation. To begin with, despite his excellent Chan pedigree, Qisong confounds any expectations that a Chan master speak enigmatically and behave unpredictably. When he left his hometown in 1025 or so, Qisong traveled north along the Xi river, past Guizhou, to the Xiang river, which he followed northeast through Hunan. Chen dates Qisong's arrival in Hangzhou, oft en referred to as Qiantang for the river to the south of the city, to the Qingli era. Along with the "Yuanjiao" and "Xiao lun," the set of works known as the Fujiao pian oughly Buddhist pieces like a long essay in praise of the Platform Sūtra.

Keywords: Hangzhou; Qisong; Xiao lun; Yuanjiao



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