Talk:Shingon Buddhism

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Chen Yen is Wade-Giles; the modern pinyin rendering is Zhen Yan. Perhaps it would be better to use only pinyin as that has come to be the standard system of representing Chinese.

Similarly Hua Yan (not Hua Yen) for Kegon.

Origins in Indian and China[edit]

Would it not be possible at some point to write in this article about the Indian and chinese origins of this sect as well as mentioning the Chinese Escotric Buddhist sects in China today. for example:- Hanmi Buddhism: Mystery School of Amoghavajra and Jin-Gang-Dhyana

Yes, I think there should be a section on the Indian and Chinese origins of Esoteric Buddhism. Perhaps there should be a list of the generally excepted lineage holders of the Esoteric dharma and include the timeline to illustrate the transmission from India to China to Japan. for example:-

The Eight Founding Patriarchs Who Transmitted The Dharma (Fuho-Hasso)
1. Mahavairocana Tathagatha
2. Vajrasattva Bodhisattva
3. Nagarjuna
4. Nagabodhi (most likely aka Dharmagupta)
5. Vajrabodhi
6. Amoghavajra
7. Hui-Guo
8. Kukai


The Eight Founding Patriachs Who Maintained The Tradition (Denji-Hasso)
1. Nagarjuna
2. Nagabodhi
3. Vajrabodhi
4. Amoghavajra
5. Subhakarasimha
6. I-Hsing
7. Hui-Guo
8. Kukai

OracleBone (talk) 19:30, 18 February 2010 (UTC)

Does Zhēnyán still exists?[edit]

It would be very interesting to have an article concerning the chinese Zhēnyán buddhism and its influences or remmnants in chinese buddhism.

There are many esoteric elements still in Chinese Buddhism, and a number of small traditions exist. However, Chinese Buddhism has no truly distinct schools (even Chan and Pure Land are only schools in name), and not much has been written about esoteric teachings in Chinese Buddhism. All the best. Tengu800 21:45, 25 December 2012 (UTC)

Thanks for your answer. But are there any school that still accepts the mahavairocana sutra, for exsmple? That would certainly qualify them as a Zhenyan remnant.


Shingon is not a school within Vajrayana Buddhism. It is similar in many ways, but describing it as a sub-school of Vajrayana is not accurate. It was imported to Japan prior to the full rise of the tantra system, and is notably vocal in distancing itself from Vajrayana practice. More accurately Shingon is a school within non-tantric Mahayana practice. Notably, the Shingon website listed as a source does not describe itself as Vajrayana.

See the books Shingon: Japanese Esoteric Buddhism by Taiko Yamasaki and Tantra in Practice Yeah someone somewhere described it as predating Tibetan Buddhism yet Vajrayana Buddhism arrived in Tibet centuries before Buddhism was established in japan. zh:真言宗 —Preceding unsigned comment added by Atrip (talk

I recently asked a Shingon Priest at Koyasan about this very topic (is Shingon Vajrayana or not) and he said it really depended on what you define as Vajrayana. If you list specific tantras as requisite of Vajrayana, then yes, Shingon does not fit this criteria as specific Tibetan tantras are missing. However, if you define Vajrayana by its esoteric nature, and the fact that it does have tantra, then it a branch of Vajrayana Buddhism. You could call it a branch of esoteric Mahayana Buddhism, but Tibetan Buddhism could fit this same mold as well. In general, people have different ideas on what constitutes Vajrayana, but one thing is clear: Shingon definitely represents a similar, but older version of what later became Tibetan Buddhism. Kukai's lineage comes from India ultimately, and many of the same esoteric sutras are used, even if the interpretation varies slightly. --Ph0kin 15:06, 27 September 2007 (UTC)
Nobody define Vajrayana as "specific Tibetan tantras" (such thing as Tibetan tantras doesn't exisis at all, exists only Indian tantras). Tibetan scholars like Kedrub Je defined vajrayana as dhyana (meditation on devata like Vayrocana etc), japa (manra recitacion) and seva (I don't know how to say it in English something like offering to devata). Singon tantras or esoteric sutras exists in Tibetan tradition too while not so popular as in Japon but this of course are different lineages. --Вантус (talk) 00:16, 6 March 2012 (UTC)

contribs) 15:11, 15 October 2007 (UTC)

Attempt at resolution

I have added a section under the heading 'Teachings' called Is Shingon Vajrayana? that addresses this issue. I hope that it is a sufficient reflection of the general consensus.

OracleBone (talk) 05:49, 1 April 2010 (UTC)


Surely 金剛乗 is the Japanese reading of Vajrayana in general, not just Shingon itself? I've moved it over to Vajrayana. Jpatokal (talk) 22:46, 21 December 2007 (UTC)

That's probably correct. Shingon Buddhism is very much a Vajrayana sect, whereas some other sects have Vajrayana elements, but otherwise are "exoteric" sects (see Tendai for example), but you're right. Vajrayana is a vehicle in Buddhism, which Shingon is one such lineage of that vehicle. Thanks! --Ph0kin (talk) 10:56, 15 December 2008 (UTC)

"schism" section[edit]

The "schism" section's last 2 paragraphs are entirely unrelated to that heading and its contents. They should be moved. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:37, 10 February 2013 (UTC)

"Doctrines" section[edit]

The two links for the Adhyardhaśatikā Prajñāpāramitā Sutra (Rishu-kyō 理趣経), and the Susiddhikara Sutra (Soshitsuji-kyō 蘇悉地経) respectively lead to: 1. a non-Wikipedia page (, and 2. a Chinese language page. Isn't this sort of linking within an article against Wikipedia rules? Bainst (talk) 23:45, 26 February 2013 (UTC)

Picture of a Shingon monk[edit]

Shingon monk at the Shigisan Chosonshiji temple

Feel free to use in the article if you think it would contribute anything.Hyuganatsu (talk) 13:47, 22 January 2014 (UTC)

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