The Discipline of Pure Fire (Saika Gyo Ho) in Shinto Buddhism: Fire Ritual in Japanese Religious Traditions

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This comparative analysis of fire rituals examines the kinds of adaptations,
innovations and guiding principles that led to the creation of this unique Shinto-
Buddhist ritual fire.


“The authors are to be commended for adding depth and breadth to an under-researched area of religious studies.”-Rev. Prof. Stuart DB Picken, Japan Society of Scotland

“…it starts with a description of the life history of the person who invented and-during many years-executed the ritual concerned, followed by an analytical description of the ritual…I therefore warmly recommend [this book]”-Prof. J. A. M. Snoek, University of Heidelberg

“In addition to your excellent field-based data and discourse on it, the work is also strengthened by a solid knowledge of the most up-to-date ritual theory and method.”…Prof. Frederick M. Denny Ret.

Table of Contents

Foreword by Dr. Stuart D.B. Picken

Author's Preface


Conventions and Terminology

I. Introduction

II. The Celebrant
A. Yamamoto GQji's personal history
B. Parallels with Japanese Shamanism

III. Description of the Full Ritual of Purification
A. Misogi lO
B. The Discipline of Pure Fire (Saika gyo ho)
1. Saika gyo ho prefatory rites
2. Saika gyo ho proper

IV. An Amalgam of Shinto-Buddhist Rituals: A Comparative Analysis
A. Goma rites in Shingon Buddhism
B. Saito Goma in Shugendo
C. Kuji mudras in Shinto/Buddhism/Shugendo
D. Mantras and associated mudras and gestures

V. Birth of a Ritual Fire: Adaptation and Innovation
A. Adaptations
B. Innovations
C. Guiding Principle
D. Conclusion


Japanese characters for key terms



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