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The Journey to the West A story about pilgrimage Xuanzang (Hsuan-tsang, 596-664) and his adventurous pilgrimage to India. Characters: Tang Sanzang, Sun.

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Presentation on theme: "The Journey to the West A story about pilgrimage Xuanzang (Hsuan-tsang, 596-664) and his adventurous pilgrimage to India. Characters: Tang Sanzang, Sun."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Journey to the West A story about pilgrimage Xuanzang (Hsuan-tsang, ) and his adventurous pilgrimage to India. Characters: Tang Sanzang, Sun Wukong, Zhu Bajie, Sha Wujing Sources of this novel: Story cycles already popular before the writing of the novel Indian work Ramayana?

2 Xuanzang: the foremost pilgrim in Chinese History Xuanzang or Tang Sanzang Historically, the most respected Chinese pilgrim and one of the greatest Buddhist masters Traveled to India for 16 years ( ), brought back 657 items of Buddhist scriptures, as well translated and compiled translations of 74 works in 1335 volumes Founder of a new Chinese Buddhist school in the Tang dynasty — the Faxiang or Weishi (Conscious- only) School Probably responsible for the composition of the Heart Sutra (Xinjing), the shortest Buddhist sutra, but the most-recited one. His pilgrimage, which was to resolve the controversy regarding “ Buddha nature, ” inspired storytellers to write stories about his adventurous journey

3 General Synopsis of the Novel Chapters 1-7: the birth of Sun Wukong, his acquisition of immortality and magic power, his invasion and disturbance of Heaven, and his final subjugation by the Buddha under Mt. Five Phases Chapter 8: the Buddha declars his intention to impart the Buddhist canon to the Chinese, and the journey of Guanyin to the East Chapters 9-12: fictional account of Xuanzang: his birth and his vengeance on his father’s murder; Minister Wezheng excuted a dragon, Emperor Tang Taizong’s journey to the underworld. Chapters 13-97: the journey with 81 ordeals preordained for Xuanzang Chapter : successful completion of the journey

4 Narrative Structure of the Novel Prose interlaced with verse Writer influenced by vigorous poetic tradition Writer inherited prosimetric characters of “transformation text” ( bianwen ) Purposes of the short, interlaced poetry Personal commentary: e.g., critique of decadent Confucian and Buddhist morality Moral judgment Exemplum: sustain moral arguments Summary Function of narrative verses Describing scenery, battle, seasons, living beings Presenting dialogues Presenting authorial commentary on the action and character highlighting religious themes and rhetoric as well as allegorical devices

5 Ideas and Terms Associated with Buddhism (I) Four great continents (p. 66) Ten thousand kalpas (p. 67) Rare pagodas (p. 69) Worshiped bodhisattva (p.69) Monkey King’s vexation (p.72) King Yama, king of the underworld (p.73) Trouble by impermanence (p.73) Three species: the Buddhas, the immortals, the holy sages (p.73) Wheel of transmigration (p.73) Origin and the dharma of all things (p.75) Never ending desire (pp.75-76) Patriarch Subodhi and Buddha nature (pp ) Monkey King’s name change: “Wukong”-- awakening to emptiness (p. 82)

6 Ideas and Terms Associated with Buddhism (II) Gold lotus, three vehicles, Zen (Chan) –p.83 Buddha or immortal (p.88) Three calamities (thunder, fire, mighty wind) (p. 89) The mind (p.91) that make things difficult Oral formula—Buddhist mantra (dharani)(p.91) Merit accumulation (p.91) Dragon king and Yaksa (p.103) Birthless and deathless body (p.103) Three religions (p.111) Bodhisattva Ksitigarbha (p. 112) Samsara (p. 113) Bodhisattva Guanyin (pp. 150, 155, 180f)

7 Ideas and Terms Associated with Buddhism (III) Tushita Palace (Maitreya ’ s Heaven) (p.167) Tathagata (p.168), his might, unfathomable power (p. 176) Western Region (p.170) Ananda, Kashypa, Sakyamuni(p.171) Buddha is universe (p.173) Western Paradise (p.175) Monkey King meets retribution (p.174) Amitabha (p. 178) Compassion (p.179)

8 Ideas and Terms Associated with Buddhism (IV) The mind is Buddha, and the Buddha is mind (p.297) Beginning of pilgrimage (p.303) Six robbers [whose names represent six senses when they are impure: eye, ear, nose, tongue, mind, body] Violence vs. Anti-violence: Pilgrimage Sun (disciple) vs. Tripitaka (master) (pp.301,308),,ore killings (p.355) Guanyin ’ s manifestation (pp )

9 Ideas and Terms Associated with Buddhism (V) Greed (Bajie, chapter 18, p.457; monks in Guanyin Hall, p.333); gluttonous (Bajie, p.373) Pilgrim calls Bajie “ glutton ”, “ preta ” (p.402) Bajie ’ s name means forbidding killing, stealing, sexual immorality, lying, the use of cosmetics and other personal comforts, strong drink, the use of dancing and music, and eating out of regulation hour) Monkey King slowly transforms, becoming less violent (p.338) Guanyin always helps (p.361) World of dust (p.386) The dharma is born through mind (p.597) The Heart Sutra (pp )

10 Ideas and Terms Associated with Taoism (I) Yin-Yang (p.66) Man was born at Yin (P.66) Immortal stone (p.67) Celestial Jade Emperor (pp.68, 102) The Flower-Fruit Mountain (p.68) The Blessed Land of Flower Fruit Mountain All kinds of herbs, yellow sperms (p.72) Does not know contentment (p.72) Immortal mountain in a blessed land (p.73) Immortal peaches (p.73) Fruits associated with health/longevity (p.75) In search of immortal ’ s way (p.75), immortality (p.76)

11 Ideas and Terms Associated with Taoism (II) Cultivation of the Tao (p.78) Nature described in poem (p.79) Yak-tail (symbol of purity and detachment) (p.83) Vital force, the semen, the breath, breathing exercise (p.88) Transformations (p.90) Fly and ascension (p.90) North Sea (p.90) Monkey King’s dream (p.109) Register of Death

12 Ideas and Terms Associated with Taoism (III) Three Pure Ones (p.134) Immortal maidens (p.136) Queen Mother of the West (p.137) Lao-tzu (p.141) Golden Elixir of Nine Turns (p.43) Power of Taoism (p.167) Eight Trigrams (p.167) Huang Shih-kung and Red Pine Seeds (p.311) Weakness conquer strong (Tripitaka vs. Pilgrim) “The rare object of art should not be exposed” (p.334) Knead the cinnabar and refine the mercury (p.348)

13 Ideas and Terms Associated with Taoism (IV) Taoist ideals (poem on p.368) Taoists as exorcists (p.370) Longevity (p.464) Ginseng fruit and Ginseng tree (p.478)


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