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Buddhism 20/24 The Classical Period of Chinese Buddhism

During the T’ang Dynasty (618–907), when Buddhism had been fully absorbed into Chinese civilization, a series of indigenous Chinese schools gave brilliant and distinctive expression to the values of the Mahayana tradition.


The T’ien-t’ai School (named after a sacred mountain) produced an influential synthesis of Buddhist teachings based on the Lotus sutra. The Hua-yen (“Flower Garland”) School pictured reality as a vast network of interrelated and interpenetrating phenomena.


The Ch’an School developed the distinctive Chinese meditative tradition that came to be known in Japan as Zen. The Ching-t’u lineage developed the Chinese tradition of devotion to Amitabha Buddha. Buddhist values also had important influence on Chinese literature and the arts.

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