Introduction to the Lotus Sutra

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“An elegant historical, textual, and philosophical overview of what is arguably the most widely disseminated scripture of Mahayana Buddhism.”
—Mark Unno, editor of Buddhism and Psychotherapy


Yoshiro Tamura Gene Reeves

The Lotus Sutra—one of the most popular Buddhist classics—is here accessibly introduced by one of its most eminent scholars.

“Soon after entering university in December of 1943, I was sent to the front as a student soldier. I wondered if I were allowed to bring but a single book on the trip, possibly to my death, which would I want to bring. It was the Lotus Sutra.”
—from the author’s Preface

Having developed a lifelong appreciation of the Lotus Sutra—even carrying a dog-eared copy with him through service in World War II—Yoshiro Tamura sought to author an introduction to this beloved work of Buddhist literature. Tamura wanted it to be different than other basic explorations of the text; his introduction would be plain-spoken, relevant and sensitive to modern concerns, and well-informed by contemporary scholarship. He succeeded marvelously with Introduction to the Lotus Sutra, which Gene Reeves—Tamura’s student and translator of the popular English edition of The Lotus Sutra—translates and introduces in English for the first time here. Tackling issues of authenticity in the so-called “words of Buddha,” the influence of culture and history on the development of the Lotus Sutra, and the sutra’s role in Japanese life, Introduction to the Lotus Sutra grounds this ancient work of literature in the real, workaday world, revealing its continued appeal across the ages.

book information
  • Paperback
  • 208 pages, 6.00 x 9.00 inches
  • $18.95
  • ISBN 9781614290803
  • ebook
  • 208 pages
  • $11.99
  • ISBN 9781614290995
about the author
Introduction to the Lotus Sutra

Yoshiro Tamura (1921-1989) was a well-regarded scholar of Japanese Buddhism, known particularly for his study of the Lotus Sutra and the traditions that developed around it and the person of Nichiren in Japan.

Introduction to the Lotus Sutra

Gene Reeves studied, taught, and wrote in Japan for twenty years, primarily on Buddhism and interfaith relations. When he retired from the University of Tsukuba, where he taught for eight years, he served as the international advisor at Rissho Kosei- kai. He was a founder of and the special minister for the International Buddhist Congregation in Tokyo, and he also served as the international advisor to the Niwano Peace Foundation and was the coordinator of an annual International Seminar on the Lotus Sutra. In the spring of 2008, Reeves was a visiting professor at the University of Peking, Beijing, China.

Reeves was active in interfaith conversations and organizations: he served as chair of the Planning Committee for the 1987 Congress of the International Association for Religious Freedom (IARF) at Stanford University; he was one of the founders of the Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions; and he was a member of the Board of the Society for Buddhist Christian Studies. In Japan he was an advisor to the Japan Liaison Committee of the IARF and a participant in the Religious Summit at Mount Hiei and in various activities of the World Conference of Religions for Peace. As a Buddhist teacher, he traveled frequently to China, Singapore, Taiwan, America, and Europe to give talks at universities and churches, mainly on the Lotus Sutra.

Gene Reeves died in 2019.

Other books by Gene Reeves:
The Illustrated Lotus Sutra
The Lotus Sutra
The Stories of the Lotus Sutra

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