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Karyobinga Shomyo Kenkyukai

Friday, November 10, 2017 7:00PM
Memorial Church

"Daihannya Tendoku-e"
Performed by
Karyōbinga Shōmyō Kenkyūkai

Friday, November 10, 2017

Memorial Church, Stanford, CA 94305

Kashōken, an internationally renowned ensemble of Japanese Shingon priests, will perform a Daihannya Tendoku, a “rolling reading” of the Great Sutra on the Perfection of Wisdom (Mahāprajñāpāramitā sūtra) at the Memorial Church of Stanford University. The Daihannya Tendoku is one of the most important rituals of Japanese Buddhism. It features the Great Sutra on the Perfection of Wisdom, one of the central texts of Mahayana Buddhism, and with 600 fascicles also the longest text in the Buddhist canon. Since the early eighth century, rituals centered on a reading of this sutra have been performed in Japan.

In early times, several hundred clerics gathered for several days to read the sutra character by character. However, this was often impractical, or even impossible, as not enough clerics were present to recite the entire text. For this reason, clerics sought to find ways to abbreviate the ritual. When sutra books in concertina format were introduced, clerics started to just skim through the text by having the pages of the book quickly glide from one hand to other, while loudly exclaiming the titles of the sutra and its volumes, as well as a few lines of the sutra itself. This way of reading, called “rolling reading,” resulted in the dramatic visual effect of accordion-like sutra pages cascading through the air. Paired with the sound of loud voices intoning the titles of the sutra and its volumes, the ritual creates what the priests call a “wind of wisdom.” In today’s concert, Kashoken invites you on a journey to the sounding world of Japanese esoteric Buddhism, to feel the breath of the “wind of wisdom” yourself.

Departments of Religious Studies, Music, East Asian Languages and Cultures; Office for Religious Life; Stanford Humanities Center; Center for East Asian Studies, Center for South Asia


E-tickets and online orders only (no mailing and no will call).
Doors open at 6:30 p.m.
Seating for this event is general admission, first come, first served.


If you have questions about your order, please email Stanford Ticket Office

Karyobinga Shomyo Kenkyukai