The Jeweled Fish Hook: Monastic Exemplarity in the "Shalu Abbatial History".
Wood, Benjamin.
296 p.
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dissertation note
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Toronto (Canada), 2012.
general note
Adviser: Frances Garrett.
Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 74-08(E), Section: A.
local note
ROBARTS MICROTEXT copy on microfiche.
The constitution of this pattern of exemplarity is examined within four themes of virtuous conduct: the dedication to resolving congregational conflicts, the literalist observance of the Buddhist disciplinary code contained within the Vinaya, the devotion to the preservation of books, and the power to successfully exploit violent rituals to protect the monastic tradition. The prescriptive vision, moreover, constituted by these four virtuous themes, lies not only within the History itself, but also more broadly in the intertextual connections that clarify this prescription and infuse it with meaning from the Shalu tradition--the world that has generated, and is reflected within, the text.
This dissertation is an in-depth study of the nineteenth-century Shalu Abbatial History, a collection of biographies of abbots and other important religious masters, or lamas, from the Tibetan monastery of Shalu, located in the Tibetan region of Tsang. Examining the History in conjunction with the autobiography of its author, Losel Tengyong (b. 1804), and vis-a-vis other texts from Shalu, reveals, I argue, that the Shalu Abbatial History is a guidebook of conduct that prescribes to the Shalu monk, its intended reader, a discrete pattern of exemplarity that constitutes the author's own particular vision of what a noble lama should be within the Shalu tradition.
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