C. 1700: Kyotaku denki
虚鐸伝記 - Kyotaku denki
"Record of the History of the Imitated (or, False) Bell"
Anonymous, no date. Quite possibly created by the Kyōto Myōan Temple élite around the year 1700.
Source: Complete text reprinted in Nakatsuka 1979, pp. 123-125.
Do note that, composed and issued by the Kyōto Myōan-ji, this document does not mention any "Fuke Sect",
Fuke-shū, 普化宗, at all.
Printed with rendering in common classical Japanese in Kyōto in 1795 - see link to a copy of that publication in the National Diet Library, Tōkyō, below.
Direct link to a copy of Kyotaku denki at The National Diet Library, Tōkyō
- go to frame 14 and onwards
寄竹 - KICHIKU - or, YORITAKE?
三虚霊譜 - SAN-KYOREI-FU - The Three "Empty Spirit Notations"
It is well known that the legend of the Kyotaku, the "imitated bell", has, for long, been regarded as a forgery, or more precisely: A fabrication.
There can no more be any doubt that the text was primarily produced for the benefit and strengthened reputation of the Myōan Temple in SE Kyōto.
The monk Ton'o, the alleged author of the text, is however reported to have been active during the late Kan'ei period (1624-1644),
and judging from the subject matter of the story, it could although but only theoretically, have been composed already at that time.
It is, in any case, noteworthy, that central elements of the story about Hottō Kokushi, the four devoted men and Kyochiku
(formerly Kichiku, in the Kyotaku denki) were in fact in existence in 1735, contained in the Myōan-ji document
Kyorei-zan engi narabi-ni sankyorei-fu ben, see below.
- - -
"Gakushin [i.e.: Kakushin, alias Hottō Kokushi] studied the art of the kyotaku. As the days passed, he went to the heart of Zen philosophy
and attained proficiency in the kyotaku;
finally he took leave of San [Kakushin's alleged kyotaku teacher Chōsan] (to return to Japan).
Gakushin left Hsü-Chow for Ming-Chow, where he unmoored his ship.
It was in the second year of the Sung Dynasty that he returned to Japan, where it was the sixth year of Kenchō,
in the the reign of Emperor Gofukakasu."
"Thereafter, Gakushin confined himself in a mountain temple at Kōyasan, sometimes visiting the capital (Kyoto).
Years passed, and he founded a Buddhist temple named Saihōji in the province of Kishū [present-day Kōkoku-ji in Wakayama Pref.],
where he established his permanent abode.
- - -
"Among his numerous students, there was one called Kichiku. The more earnest he became in his devotion to Zen Buddhism,
the more ardent was his admiration for his master.
Gakushin also took a more kindly interest in him than in other students.
One day Gakushin told Kichiku:"
"'When I was (studying) in the country of Sung, I was instructed in the kyotaku and I perform on it well even today.
I would like to initiate you in this flute in the hope that, as my successor, you will pass this art on to posterity.'
Kichiku, dancing for joy and expressing his gratitude, received instruction in this music and attained proficiency in the instrument.
He took delight in playing it everyday untiringly."
"There were four more students - - Kokusaku, Risei, Hōfu and Sōjo - - who also learned this flute well.
They were known to the world under the (collective) title Shikoji ("Four Devoted Men")."
- - -
Quoted from the 'Kyotaku denki', trsl. by Tsuge Gen'ichi, 1977.
Printed in Asian Music, Vol. VIII, 2. New York, 1977.
The complete translation is available at: www.links.jstor.org
Kyotaku denki, original text in kanbun. Source: Nakatsuka 1979, pp. 123-125.