Harada Daiun Sogaku

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Harada Daiun Sogaku
Daiun Harada.jpg
Born(1871-10-13)October 13, 1871
DiedDecember 12, 1961(1961-12-12) (aged 90)
ReligionZen Buddhism
EducationKomazawa University
Senior posting
SuccessorHakuun Yasutani Harada Tangen

Daiun Sogaku Harada (原田 大雲祖岳, Harada Daiun Sogaku, October 13, 1871 – December 12, 1961) was a Sōtō Zen monk who trained under both Sōtō and Rinzai teachers and became known for his teaching combining methods from both schools.[citation needed]


Born in an area known today as Obama, Fukui Prefecture, he entered a Sōtō temple as a novice at age 7 and continued training in temples during his primary and high school years. At age 20 he entered Shogen-ji, a well-known Rinzai monastery; it is reported that he experienced kensho after two and half years there.[citation needed] In 1901 he graduated from Komazawa University (then Sōtō-shu Daigakurin), the Sōtō university. He eventually studied under various Sōtō and Rinzai masters such as Harada Sodo Kakusho,[1] Oka Sotan, Akino Kodo, Adachi Tatsujun, Hoshimi Tenkai, Unmuken Taigi Sogon, and Kogenshitsu Dokutan Sosan. From the years of 1911 to 1923, Harada held a professor position at Soto-shu Daigakurin. A very strict disciplinarian, he served as abbot at various Sōtō temples throughout Japan: Hosshin-ji, Chisai-in, Bukkoku-ji, Sōji-ji and Chigen-ji. Until almost age 90, he conducted week-long sesshin at Hosshin-ji 6 times a year; he also held sesshin elsewhere.[citation needed]

Harada Roshi's teaching integrated the Rinzai use of Kōan, a practice which was abolished in the Sōtō-school in the 19th century under influence of Gento Sokuchu (1729–1807).[2] He also departed from the Sōtō conventions of his day by training lay persons with monks rather than separately.

A well-known heir in the West is Hakuun Yasutani Rōshi, a Sōtō monk who he also trained in koan study. This led ultimately to the spread of combined Sōtō and Rinzai methods by the Sanbo Kyodan, a new Zen sect founded by Yasutani which became influential in the West. Harada himself, however, remained within the Sōtō sect. It is often claimed in the West that he received Rinzai inka shomei (dharma transmission) from Dokutan Rōshi. Harada Rōshi may be viewed as an eclectically talented Sōtō teacher who did not abide by sectarian boundaries in regard to practice method.


Harada has been criticized for his support of the Japanese War-endeavors.[3] A famous quote from Harada, cited in Zen at War, is:

[If ordered to] march: tramp, tramp, or shoot: bang, bang. This is the manifestation of the highest Wisdom [of Enlightenment]. The unity of Zen and war of which I speak extends to the farthest reaches of the holy war [now under way].[4][5]

Dharma heirs[edit]

Dharma-heirs from Harada Roshi are:[6]

See also[edit]



  • Heine, Steven; Wright, Dale S. (2000). The Koan: Texts and Contexts in Zen Buddhism. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-511748-4. OCLC 41090651.
  • Tiltenberg (2002), Zen Without Dirty Hands? Report from a seminar and retreat at De Tiltenberg, Vogelenzang in the Netherlands July 17–22, 2001, ISBN 90-807042-3-7
  • Victoria, Brian Daizen (2006), Zen at war (Second ed.), Lanham e.a.: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.

External links[edit]