2010 ECU Kyoto
May 10-May 26,
Schedule for the Kyoto Field Study
1691 (12:30 pm) to Detroit
International (arrive 2:20 pm --- 1 hr 50 minutes in flight)
0069 (3:40 pm) to Kansai
International Airport (6:20 pm: 13 hrs 40 minutes in flight)
Arrive: Kansai International
Airport to Kyoto
Station to EL INN
Nara Todaiji Japanese
More information on Nara
Field Study at
Deer Park and Buddhist Sacred Animals" (This
field study examines the deer as the sacred animal of Buddhism, given its
association with the "Deer Park Lecture" of the Buddha following
his realization of nirvana).
(Kegon) Buddhism and the Religious Consolidation of Imperial
Rule" (This lecture explains how the "Great
Buddha" – daibutsu – of Kegon Buddhism was an expression
of imperial religiosity and political ambition. The Tōdaiji is a
UNESCO World Heritage site).
Field Study at
the Kasuga Shintō Shrine with discussion of:
Kasuga Shrine, and the Fujiwara Aristocrats" (This
field study examines a Shintō Shrine associated with the Fujiwara, a
family of aristocrats known for marrying their daughters into the imperial
Reflections: "Ancient Imperial Religion and the Political Order"
Topics for consideration: What separation?
Church/State and matsurigoto. (The aim of
this session will be to explore the close association of religion, politics
and culture in ancient Japan).
Study at Mt Hiei, Enryakuji Temple:
"Tendai Buddhism and Ancient
Education" (This discussion emphasizes the importance of Tendai
Buddhism and its main temple atop Mt. Hiei, the Enryakuji -- a UNESCO World
Heritage site -- as an early center for educational training in ancient
“Oda Nobugaga and the Burning
of Mt. Hiei”
(This discussion includes
examination of the history of the Enryakuji, through the time of its
destruction by fire in the mid-16th century by the samurai
warlord, Oda Nobunaga. The problem of religious sanctuary and political
power will be discussed at length, as well as the political roles that Mt.
Hiei had come to play over the years).
“Mt. Hiei as a Center for the
Study of the Lotus Sutra” (The Tendai teachings extolled the Lotus Sutra above
all other Buddhist scriptures. Since so much of later Buddhism in Japan
emerged from the Tendai teachings in one way or another, it is not
surprising that the Lotus Sutra served as a crucial text for later
Reflections: Politics and Religion Revisited in Tendai Buddhism
consideration: "The Lotus Sutra and Japanese Buddhism" (This reflection
session should explore thoughts about the universalistic claims of the
Lotus Sutra regarding the inevitable Buddha-hood of all sentient beings.
The Lotus Sutra's theories regarding truth and expedient means (upaya) will
also be discussed).
International Conference Center
Subway from Kyoto Station to Kyoto
Field Study at
the Kyoto International Conference Center:
'Love of Nature' and the Kyoto Protocol" (This
discussion explores the relationship of the much clichéd Japanese
love for nature and the very real negotiation of the Kyoto Protocol).
Field Study at
the Kyoto Botanical Garden:
Botanical Garden and the U.S. Occupation" (This
field study looks beyond the beautiful plants of the Botanical Garden to
recall the historic role played by the same piece of land in postwar Japan,
as the Kyoto headquarters for U.S. forces occupying Japan).
Reflections: Natural Beauty and Modern Kyoto (Although
there are many beautiful places in and around Kyoto, much of the city is
not in the least attractive, and could easily be described in much worse
terms. Participants will be asked to comment on the apparent contradiction
between an appreciation for natural beauty and the evident lack of it in
Chion'in Yasaka jinja Kiyomizu Temple
Field Study at
the Chion'in Pure Land Buddhist Temple, with lecture on:
Buddha, the Nembutsu, and Pure Land Faith" (This
lecture reintroduces the teachings of Pure Land Buddhism at one of the
largest and most historic of the Pure Land temples, the Chion'in).
Field Study at
the Yasaka Shintō Shrine, with lecture on:
and Amaterasu in Shintō Belief" (This
lecture introduces students to the deities worshiped at the Yasaka Shrine
and the Ise Shrine, two of the most sacred of the Shintō shrines in
all of Japan).
Field Study at
the Kiyomizu Buddhist Temple, with lecture:
Water and Japanese Buddhism" (This lecture
explores the importance of water as a substance and image in Japanese
Buddhism. The Kiyomizu is a recognized UNESCO World Heritage site).
Reflections: Varieties of Buddhism and Shinto in Kyoto Culture, Topic for
consideration: "Purity and pollution in Buddhism and Shintō"
(Reflections will focus on the themes of purity
and pollution in Shintō, where they are central, and Buddhism, wherein
their importance is less doctrinal than distinctively Japanese).
Reflections: The Secular and Sacred, Buddhism and Flea Markets (Participants
discuss the apparent contradiction between the Buddhist teaching that
attachments are the source of suffering and the rampant commercial activity
on the grounds of a hallowed Buddhist temple. Students will share their
experiences of Japanese merchandise – used kimonos, etc – at
the flea market)
Nijo Castle, Old Imperial Palace Wikipedia on Kyoto Gosho
Study in Monumental Architecture: The Imperial Palace and Nijō Castle:
"Of Power and Impotence:
Emperor and Shogun in Tokugawa Japan" (This discussion
emphasizes the balance of power created by the construction of Nijō
Castle – a recognized UNESCO World Heritage site -- in the 16th-17th
centuries, the palatial fortification that came to symbolize Tokugawa power
during the last shogunal period, 1600-1868. Consequently, the old imperial
palace diminished by comparison. The ironic ties between these two centers
of power are explored in detail).
"Guided Tour, in English, of
the Old Imperial Palace" (While Japanese and foreigners
can walk around the outer walls of the Old Imperial Palace, they are not
allowed inside except during a designated period during the spring of every
year. Foreigners can apply for inclusion in guided tours, in English, at
the Imperial Household Agency Offices on the grounds of the Old Imperial
"English Audio Tour of
Nijō Castle" (There are audio tours in English of Nijō
Castle. Participants will take this tour).
Locating power through political architecture (Participants will
discuss the relative positions of the old imperial palace and Nijō
Castle to determine why they were positioned where they were and what were
the consequences of such placement. The nature of shogunal power in the
imperial capital will also be discussed).
Kyoto kyoiku daigaku (11:00 am)
Momoyama Chugakko (Middle School) -- 1:00 pm
Heian Shrine and
Field Study in Monumental
Historical Architecture: The Heian Shrine and Nanzenji Temple:
"Of Power and Impotence: The
Old Capital in a New Age" (This discussion emphasizes the
balance of imperial power and culture created by the construction of the
Heian Shrine during the late-19th and early 20th
centuries, commemorating the passage of power to a new site, that of Tokyo.
The Heian Shrine and its grand torii will be studied in comparison with the
huge gate of the Nanzenji temple, a Zen temple nearby that was the object
of continual imperial patronage).
Varieties of Buddhism and Shinto in Kyoto Culture, Topic for consideration:
"Purity and pollution in Buddhism and Shintō" (Reflections will focus
on the themes of purity and pollution in Shintō, where they are
central, and Buddhism, wherein their importance is less doctrinal than
Ginkakuji, Philosophers' Walk
Field Study at the Ginkakuji:
and the Beginning of the End of the Ashikaga Shogunate” (This
lecture notes how historically the Ginkakuji was constructed by Ashikaga
Yoshimasa, an Ashikaga shogun who had all but lost interest in governing
medieval Japan. Retreating to the Ginkakuji, Yoshimasa left his realm to
descend into chaos and civil war. One of the most immediate consequences
was the destruction of most of central Kyoto during the Onin Wars of the
along the “Philosopher’s Walk:”
Kitarō and the Tetsugaku no michi” (This
lecture explains the identification of the “philosopher’s
walk” located just southwards from the Ginkakuji. Specifically, it is
referred to as such due to the habit of Professor Nishida Kitarō, a
famous Kyoto professor of philosophy, for walking along the canal south of
the Ginkakuji during the evenings. Nishida’s philosophy, a blend of
German philosophy and Zen, will be explained).
Reflections: Japanese Aethetics and Zen Buddhism (Participants
discuss the extent to which Japanese aesthetics can be construed as an
expression of Zen, or Zen an expression of Japanese aesthetics)
Fushimi Inari Shrine
Field Study at Fushimi Inari Shrine
Worship and Shintō" (This lecture
explains the nature of fox worship, and the association of the fox with
economic prosperity. Shintō's relationship to success in this world is
graphically represented at this shrine of ten-thousand torii (Shintō gates),
all of which have been donated by prosperous entrepreneurs).
Field Study in
Uji at the Byōdōin:
Byōdōin and the Ten-Yen Coin" (This
field study calls attention to the presence of an engraving of the
Byōdōin – a UNESCO World Heritage site – on the back
side of the 10 yen coin. Undoubtedly this building, dating back to the
early-Heian period, is one of the most recognizable in all of Japan. The
role of the Fujiwara aristocrats in its construction and eventual
dedication to Pure Land Buddhist worship will be discussed in detail).
of Genji and Uji" (This
discussion emphasizes the importance of Uji to the Tale of Genji, the
masterpiece of Japanese literature).
Reflection Session: Capitalism and the Spirit of Fox Worship in Shintō
(Participants will discuss a newly encountered
nuance of Shintō, its connection with economic prosperity and worldly
success. Also, they will have an opportunity to reflect upon the meaning of
countless Shintō torii, or gateways to the gods, that they will have
Participants should also consider the
relationship of Uji to Kyoto in cultural history. Reflections will also
center on the Green Tea Culture that is so associated with Uji).
Toji Temple (Market
Field Study at
a Buddhist Toji Temple on Market Day:
and Worldly Pursuits: Temples as Entrepreneurial Sites" (This
field study emphasizes the compatibility of Buddhism with capitalistic
profit seeking. The esoteric teachings of Shingon "True Word"
Buddhism, as developed by Kukai, will be emphasized as an early expression
of Buddhism as a mystery religion. The grand scale of the Tōji -- its
pagoda is the tallest in Kyoto – are explained in relation to
imperial patronage. The Tōji is a recognized UNESCO World Heritage
Gion and Gion Corner
Kyoto University Wikipedia on Kyoto
Hiroshima Peace Park
Field Study in
in War and Peace” (This field study examines the city
of Hiroshima, its wartime past, and its role in the present and for the
future as a city dedicated to opposition to war and the use of nuclear
Osaka Castle More
on Osaka Castle
Field Study in Monumental Samurai
Architecture: Osaka Castle:
"Toyotomi Hideyoshi and the
Fate of Osaka Castle" (This discussion emphasizes the
balance of power created by the construction of Osaka Castle in the 16th-17th
centuries, as palatial fortifications came to symbolize samurai power. The
ironic ties between Osaka, Kyoto, and Tokyo as contending centers of power
are explored in detail).
Departure: Kyoto Station to Kansai International Airport
International Airport (12:50 pm) via Northwest Airlines 0070 to Detroit (arrive 12:00 pm --- 12 hrs
International via Northwest Airlines
1688 (5:00 pm) to RDU (6:38 pm --- 1hr 38
minutes in flight)