|KEY WORD :@art history / iconography|
known as Jie Daishi båt or Great Master Jie.The posthumous name of
Ryougen Ç¹ (912-85), abbot at Mt. Hiei äb, reformer of the Tendai Vä sect,
and early supporter of Pure Land joudo òy Buddhism. Also known by the names
Gansan Daishi ³Oåt, Tsuno Daishi påt, and Mibyou Daishi ä_åt. Born in Oumi
ß] province (Shiga prefecture), he entered Mt. Hiei, the Tendai headquarters
northeast of Kyoto, at age twelve. He became abbot in 966 and spent the
next nineteen years overseeing the rebuilding of the temple complex, constructing
new buildings and enhancing the power and prestige of the Tendai establishment.
Ryougen secured imperial patronage and acquired a nationwide network of
branch temples *betsuin
Ê@. He also reinforced monastic rules and the tradition of scholarship.
A major figure in the lineage of Tendai patriarch Ennin ~m (794-864), Ryougen
was in turn the teacher of the two seminal Pure Land theologians Genshin
¹M (942-1017) and Kakuun o^ (953-1007). When Ryougen's prayers for the recovery
of Emperor Enyuu ~Z (959-91) proved effective, he was granted the title
of Daishi or Great Master. Because he was legendary for subjugating
vengeful ghosts, many portrait sculptures were made of him. Well known examples
include the statues at Genkouji »õ (1218, Hyougo prefecture), and Manshuin
ê@ (1268, Kyoto).
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