Seeking Shakyamuni: Travel and the Reconstruction of Japanese Buddhism

Journal Article (Academic article)

The reconstruction of Japanese Buddhism in Meiji, Taisho, and Showa Japan involved not only interchanges with Europe and the United States. A central but overlooked catalyst for change was increased travel to and exchange with other Buddhists in Asia. An examination of travel accounts and other writings of three Meiji-era Japanese Buddhist travelers to South and Southeast Asia— Kitabatake D?ry?, Shaku K?zen, and Shaku S?en—reveals how contact with Buddhists in those regions stimulated Japanese Buddhists to rethink the role of the historical Buddha in their tradition and demonstrates the importance of these contacts for Buddhism in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Jaffe, RM

Published Date

  • 2004

Published In

  • Journal of Japanese Studies

Volume / Issue

  • 30 /


  • 1

Start / End Page

  • 65–96 - 65–96