2013 Winner: By Resort to Parables: Space, Time, and Awakened Minds in The Lotus Sutra.

Project Information
By Resort to Parables: Space, Time, and Awakened Minds in The Lotus Sutra.
Arts
HAVC 190D-01, The World of the Lotus Sutra
The Lotus Sutra is a deeply evocative and colorful piece of literature, and so it comes as no surprise that it is one of the most widely cherished scriptures in Buddhist China and Japan. One of the text's key messages is that the Buddha's teachings are not the ultimate truth per se, but rather are skillfully constructed devices to lead sentient beings to liberation according to their personal abilities. In my essay, I draw on the literary criticism of Mikhail Bakhtin to analyze how the text's own artful depictions of time, space, and characters are themselves skillful means according to the text's own schema. In doing so, I scrutinize how the literary elements of the Sutra serve pedagogical purposes that underscore the philosophy that inspire them.

The paper is available below as a PDF.
PDF icon 335.pdf
Students
  • Michael Yarnell (Porter)
Mentors