Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Patriarchs on PaperA Critical History of Medieval Chan Literature$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Alan Cole

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780520284067

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520284067.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 25 September 2021

Portable Ancestors

Portable Ancestors

Bodhidharma Gets Two New Families

(p.55) 3 Portable Ancestors
Patriarchs on Paper

Alan Cole

University of California Press

This chapter examines the two newer versions of the Bodhidharma family in the context of the three preceding Bodhidharma narratives. In these two early genealogical texts—Faru's biography from Shaoli Monastery and Du Fei's Record—there is solid evidence for thinking that the increasing clout of the fictive Bodhidharma family was, in fact, the result of a series of authors reworking prior literary statements in sly and careful ways. In particular, the narrator of Faru's biography, while clearly combining and editing earlier accounts of the various masters, figured out how to stage his new claims so that they would appear to have been already known and endorsed throughout the empire. Likewise, Du Fei masterfully undermined the earlier Bodhidharma narratives regarding: the centrality of transmitting the Laṅkāvatāra Sūtra; the teaching of “wall-contemplation” and the Two Entrances; and the claim that Huike lost his arm to bandits.

Keywords:   Bodhidharma family, Bodhidharma narratives, Faru, Shaoli Monastery, Du Fei, wall-contemplation, Two Entrances

California Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.