Synopses & Reviews
One of the great themes in the history of Eastern Asia is the transformation of Chinese culture by Buddhism. This process can be traced across nearly two millennia and can be seen at work in almost every aspect of Chinese life and thought. This study was undertaken with the object of showing how Buddhism has influenced Chinese culture, and in the hope that it may provide some insight into the role of the religion as a carrier of elements from one great civilization into another. It also deals with the interesting question of the nature of Buddhism as a world religion, and of the ways in which it resembles or differs from the other great faiths.
"The picture that emerges should not only be of great interest to students of Chinese history, of religion, and of cultural interaction, but may also throw light on the renewed process of borrowing and adaptation taking place in China today. Despite the formidable scope and complexity of Professor Wright's subject, he succeeds in handling it with masterly succinctness, lucidity, and insight."
"Professor Wright's masterly and readable book . . . [signals] the directions towards a genuine history of Chinese Buddhism. For some time to come, this book will furnish both specialists and lay inquirers with their clearest frame of reference."
Richard H. Robinson,Journal of the American Oriental Society
"A sound, well-balanced, and well-written account of the present state of knowledge and opinion which can be read with pleasure and profit by the general reader and at the same time provides a synthesis from which further investigation can proceed."
The Times Literary Supplement