Buddhism in Japan

Buddhism in Japan has been practiced since its official introduction in 552 CE according to the Nihon Shoki from Baekje, Korea, by Buddhist monks. Buddhism has had a major influence on the development of Japanese society and remains an influential aspect of the culture to this day. In modern times, Japan's popular schools of Buddhism are Pure Land Buddhism, Nichiren Buddhism, Shingon Buddhism and Zen; as of 2008 34% of the Japanese identify as Buddhists and the number has been growing since the 1980s, in terms of membership in organized religion. However, in terms of practice, 75% practice some form of Buddhism. About 60% of the Japanese have a Butsudan in their homes; the arrival of Buddhism in China is a consequence of the first contacts between China and Central Asia, where Buddhism had spread from the Indian subcontinent. These contacts occurred with the opening of the Silk Road in the 2nd century BCE, following the travels of Zhang Qian between 138 and 126 BCE; these contacts culminated with the official introduction of Buddhism in China in 67 CE.

Historians agree that by the middle of the 1st century, the religion had penetrated to areas north of the Huai River in China. According to the Book of Liang, written in 635, five Buddhist monks from Gandhara traveled to Japan in 467. At the time, they referred to Japan as Fusang, the name of a mythological country to the extreme east beyond the sea: Fusang is located to the east of China, 20,000 li east of the state of Da Han. In former times, the people of Fusang knew nothing of the Buddhist religion, but in the second year of Da Ming of the Song Dynasty, five monks from Kipin travelled by ship to Fusang, they propagated Buddhist doctrine, circulated scriptures and drawings, advised the people to relinquish worldly attachments. As a result the customs of Fusang changed. Although there are records of Buddhist monks from China coming to Japan before the Asuka Period, the "official" introduction of Buddhism to Japan is dated to 552 in Nihon Shoki when King Seong of Baekje sent a mission to the Emperor Kinmei that included Buddhist monks or nuns together with an image of Buddha and a number of sutras to introduce Buddhism.

The powerful Soga clan played a key role in the early spread of Buddhism in the country. Initial uptake of the new faith was slow, Buddhism only started to spread some years when Empress Suiko encouraged the acceptance of Buddhism among all Japanese people. According to legend, in 552, there was an attempt to destroy a tooth relic, one of the first of Buddha’s to arrive in the country; the hammer and anvil were destroyed but the tooth was not. On January 15, 593, Soga no Umako ordered relics of Buddha deposited inside the foundation stone under the pillar of a pagoda at Asuka-dera. In 607, in order to obtain copies of sutras, an imperial envoy was dispatched to Sui China; as time progressed and the number of Buddhist clergy increased, the offices of Sōjō and Sōzu were created. By 627, there were 46 Buddhist temples, 816 Buddhist priests, 569 Buddhist nuns in Japan; the initial period saw the six great Chinese schools, called Nanto Rokushū in Japanese were introduced to the Japanese archipelago: Ritsu Jōjitsu Kusha-shū Sanronshū Hossō Kegon These schools were centered around the ancient capitals of Asuka and Nara, where great temples such as the Asuka-dera and Tōdai-ji were erected respectively.

These were not exclusive schools, temples were apt to have scholars versed in several of the schools. It has been suggested that they can best be thought of as "study groups"; the Buddhism of these periods, known as the Asuka period and Nara period – was not a practical religion, being more the domain of learned priests whose official function was to pray for the peace and prosperity of the state and imperial house. This kind of Buddhism had little to offer to the illiterate and uneducated masses and led to the growth of "people’s priests" who were not ordained and had no formal Buddhist training, their practice was a combination of Buddhist and Daoist elements and the incorporation of shamanistic features of indigenous practices. Some of these figures became immensely popular and were a source of criticism towards the sophisticated academic and bureaucratic Buddhism of the capital; the Late Nara period saw the introduction of Tangmi to Japan from China by Kūkai and Saichō, who founded Shingon Buddhism and the Tendai school, respectively.

During the Heian period the capital was shifted from Nara to Kyoto. Monasteries became centers of powers establishing armies of Sōhei, warrior-monks. Shinto and Buddhism became the dominant religions, maintaining a balance until the Meiji-restoration; the Kamakura period was a period of crisis in which the control of the country moved from the imperial aristocracy to the samurai. In 1185 the Kamakura shogunate was established at Kamakura; this period saw the introduction of the two schools that had the greatest impact on the country: the schools of Pure Land Buddhism, promulgated by evangelists such as Genshin and articulated by monks such as Hōnen, which emphasize salvation through faith in Amitābha and remain the largest Buddhist sect in Japan.

District Council of Hindmarsh

The District Council of Hindmarsh was a local government area in South Australia from 1853 to 1875, seated at the inner north west Adelaide suburb of Hindmarsh. At the time of its establishment the population was 3,500; the council was proclaimed on 2 June 1853 on the same day as East Onkaparinga councils. Local government had only been introduced in South Australia in 1852, only the City of Adelaide and District Council of Mitcham had been created earlier; the council was named, like its seat, after South Australia's first governor, John Hindmarsh, the first owner and subdivider of section 353, Hundred of Yatala, the triangle of land having contiguous boundaries with both the historic and present suburb of Hindmarsh, south of Port Road. The inaugural councillors were Thomas Magarey, James Gibson, John Ready, John Packham, Robert R. Torrens. In 1874 the Corporate Town of Hindmarsh seceded from the district council, leading to the effective end of the latter in the same form; the remainder of Hindmarsh district council moved its seat to Woodville and was renamed to be the District Council of Woodville in 1875.

The following adjacent local government bodies co-existed with the Hindmarsh council: District Council of Glanville lay north west from its establishment in 1860. District Council of Queenstown and Alberton lay north from its establishment in 1864. District Council of Yatala lay north east and east until it was split in two in 1868, after which time the District Council of Yatala South was Hindmarsh council's northern and north eastern neighbour. District Council of Prospect lay east from its establishment in 1872. City of Adelaide northern parklands lay south east. District Council of West Torrens lay south, across the River Torrens, from its establishment a month after Hindmarsh council

Cynthia Tucker

Cynthia Tucker Haynes, is an American journalist whose weekly column is syndicated by Universal Uclick. She received a Pulitzer Prize for Commentary in 2007 for her work at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, where she served as editorial page editor, she was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004 and 2006. Haynes was born March 13, 1955 in Monroeville, the daughter of Mary Louise Marshall Tucker, a high school English teacher and John Tucker, a middle-school principal, she was born in an era of racial segregation. She attended Auburn University, where she majored in English and journalism and wrote for the student newspaper, The Auburn Plainsman. After graduation in 1976, she began work for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as a reporter. In 1980, she left the AJC for a job at The Philadelphia Inquirer. Shortly thereafter, Haynes decided that she wanted to be a foreign correspondent in Africa, but the Inquirer considered her too inexperienced for the assignment. Haynes set out on her own, freelancing for six months.

She returned to Atlanta, where she was rehired as a columnist by the AJC. Haynes was a Nieman Fellow by Harvard University in 1988, she was promoted to editorial page editor of the AJC in 1990. Haynes blogged and wrote two columns a week for both the print and web versions of the AJC, her columns were syndicated to over 40 U. S. newspapers. Those columns earned her nominations for the Pulitzer Prize for commentary in 2004 and 2006 before her win in 2007, she is regarded as politically liberal. In 2006, Haynes was named Journalist of the Year by the National Association of Black Journalists. In July 2009, Haynes moved to Washington, D. C. as the Atlanta Journal-Constitution's political columnist. She is a columnist for The 74, a news website focusing on education in the United States. Biography at Universal Press Syndicate Cynthia Tucker on IMDb Appearances on C-SPAN