Shakuhachi



「禅尺八」歴史的証拠 研究   ホームページ

The "Zen Shakuhachi" Historical Evidence Research Web Pages

Introduction & Critical Guide to the Study and Substantiation of Early Ascetic Shakuhachi Historical Chronology,
Terminology & Etymology of Concepts, Ideology, Iconology & Practices in Particular


By Torsten Mukuteki Olafsson • トーステン 無穴笛 オーラフソンデンマーク • Denmark

 



Introduction

Sitemap - All Menu Items List

Newly Added Extra Web Page Menus


About this Research Project

Preliminary Realizations & Conclusions


The Chinese Ch'an Monk P'u-k'o, the Komosō Beggars
     & the Imperialistic Catholic Christian Intruders
     - the Rōnin Samurai, the Fuke-Komosō, the Komusō
     & the Kyōto Myōan Temple - an Unbiased Narrative


The Amazing Fuke Zenji / Fuke Shakuhachi /
     Fuke-shū Legend Fabrication Hoax


To be - or not to be: a "Zen Buddhist Priest"?


Highlighted Illustrations


1549 ... The Catholic Christian Century in Japan
     & the Temple Patron Household System


Ascetic Shakuhachi Ideology
     and the Realization of The Non-Dual
     - Highlighted Quotations


Chronology of Ascetic Shakuhachi
     Ideology-related Terms, Concepts & Names


Various Errors, Misconceptions & Loose Ends

Wikipedia: Inaccuracies & Misunderstandings
     about 'Komusō', 'Fuke-shū', 'Suizen' et cetera



The Source Collections

The Japanese Written Sources - An Overview






Texts, Quotations & Illustrations
     A Chronological Panorama



 •  INDIA - 1 web page

 •  CHINA - 2 web pages

 •  JAPAN - 8 web pages

 •  The WEST - 1 web page






Research Cases of Particular Significance,
     Real Importance & Special Concern



ERA of the KOMOSŌ - The "Mat Monks"

     c. 1450 to c. 1550



1470s?: The Dance-kyōgen Play Rakuami

1474: Tōyō Eichō and Ikkyū Sōjun at the
     Inauguration of the Rebuilt Daitoku Temple, Kyōto


1494 & 1501: Two Enchanting Muromachi Period
     Poetry Contest Picture Scrolls


1512: The Taigenshō Court Music Treatise






ERA of the FUKE-SŌ / FUKE-KOMOSŌ

     c. 1550 to c. 1628?



The Komosō & Fuke-sō / Fuke-komosō Sources


1550-1560: The Early Setsuyō-shū Dictionaries


1614: The Keichō kenmon-shū Short Story Book:
     The Fuke-komosō in Hachiō-ji, West of Edo City


1621-1625: The Neo-Confucian Scholar Hayashi Razan
     on the Shakuhachi, Komosō and Related Matters


1623: Anrakuan Sakuden's Encounter
     with a Wandering Fuke-komosō


1627-1629: Takuan Sōhō, the Purple Robe Affair, the
     Concept of 'Mu-shin Mu-nen' and the Myōan sōsō-shū


1628: The Kaidō honsoku Fuke-komosō Credo






ERA of the KOMUSŌ
     "Monks of the Non-Dual & None-ness"

     c. 1628? to 1871



The Early Komusō-related Texts
     - from c. 1628? to c. 1750



1628?: A "Fuke Shakuhachi" related Murder Case
     in the Province of Tosa on the Island of Shikoku?


1637-1640: The Shimabara Uprising on Kyūshū,
     the National "Sects Inspection Bureau", and the
     Efficient Extinction of Catholic Christian Believers


c. 1640?: The Kaidō honsoku "Version 2" Copy

1640?: Is a Very Early "Komusō Temple" built
     in Nagasaki on the Island of Kyūshū?


c. 1640?: The Strange Butsu-gen Komusō Document

1646: Abbot Isshi Bunshu's Letter to a
     "Proto-Komusō" named Sandō Mugetsu


1646 ... The Hottō Kokushi / Kakushin Legend:
     "The Four Buddhist Laymen" & the "disciple" Kichiku


1650s?: The Kaidō honsoku "Version 3" Copy


The Kyōto/Kansai Sources


1659?: A Falsely Dated Myōan-ji Document Revealed

1664: The Shichiku shoshinshū Music Treatise

c, 1665-1675?: The Kyotaku denki Fairy Tale:
     Shinchi Kakushin, Kichiku & Kyōto Myōan-ji



The Edo/Kantō/Tōkyō Sources


1677: The Enpō 5, 6th Month
     Reihō-ji Komusō Set of Rules


1678: The Enpō 5, 12th Month Komusō-ha Oboe
     Bakufu Memorandum of January 11th, 1678


1687: The Jōkyō 4, 6th Month
     Reihō-ji Komusō Set of Rules



c. 1685-1690: The Yōshū fu-shi
     & Jinrin kinmō zu-i - Evidence of Kyōto Myōan-ji


1694: Myōan-ji Founder Engetsu Ryōgen's
     23 Rules for his Komusō Disciples


1703 & 1705: The Kyōto Myōan-ji
     c/o Kōkoku-ji & Myōshin-ji Interrelationship



1722: The Kyōhō 7, 6th Month,
     Reihō-ji Komusō Memorandum


1730: The Kyōhō 15, 7th Month, Ichigetsu-ji
     & Reihō-ji Komusō Memorandum



1732: The Shakuhachi denrai-ki
     and Early 'Honkyoku' History



1735: Kyōto Myōan-ji Temple Chief Administrator
     Kandō Ichiyū's Letter about 'Sankyorei-fu',
     the "Three Non-Dual Spirit Music Pieces"



1751: The Keichō 19/1614 Komusō Certificate
     The Many Different All Fabricated Versions



1752: Kyōto Myōan-ji Founder Engetsu
     Ryōgen's 23 Fixed Rules for the Komusō



1795: The Kyotaku denki kokujikai Source Book


1816: Miyaji Ikkan's Shakuhachi hikki Book

1823: Hisamatsu Fūyō's Hitori mondō a.o. texts


The Kiyū shōran Encyclopedia
     on 'Komosō' & 'Shakuhachi'







Post-Edo & Post-WW2 Period History Sources & Matters
     The Re-Writing & Re-Falsification
     of "Fuke Shakuhachi" Narratives



1 - MEIJI PERIOD till the mid-20th CENTURY

     1868-1945



1871? (1843-44): The Komusō zakki
     Source Collection



From 1879 ... 1896-1914:
     The Koji ruien Historical Encyclopedia



1890: Higuchi Taizan - Teaching, the "Myōan Society",
     and the Taizan-ha Tradition of Shakuhachi Asceticism



1902: Mikami Sanji's Critical Article
     'Fuke-shū ni tsuite', "About the Fuke Sect"


Early 20th Century Historians & Musicians, Japan:
     Kurihara Kōta, Uramoto Setchō,
     Nakatsuka Chikuzen, Tanikita Mujiku,
     Tomimori Kyozan, Ikeda Jūzan a.o.



1931-1932: Tokugawa kinreikō - A Source Collection
     of Tokugawa Period Prohibition Laws







2 - POST-WW2 till TODAY: JAPAN

     1945 ...



1950: "The Myōan Temple of the True Fuke Sect"
     Inauguration at Tōfuku Temple in SE Kyōto


1950s: Yasuda Tenzan, Hirazumi Taizan & 'Suizen'

1960: Uramoto Setchō's Essay about
     'Gyō no ongaku': "Music of Asceticism"



Shakuhachi Historianship in Japan Today?:
     The "Traditionalists" and the "Truth Tellers"



The Legacy of the Late Myōan Taizan-ha Teachers
     Yoshimura Fuan Sōshin & Ozawa Seizan







3 - POST-WW2 till TODAY: The WEST

     1945 ...



1945 ... : Some Early Post-WW2 Shakuhachi Narratives
     Written and Published in Western Languages


Translations of Shakuhachi Source Texts
     published in the West / Outside of Japan
     including the Internet / WWW
      - The Translators







Literature / References

Links

Profile / Bio / CV

Contact Info


1950s: Yasuda Tenzan, Hirazumi Taizan & the New Term 'Suizen'


吹禅 - SUIZEN

"Blowing a Flute Meditation" - "Flute-blown Meditation" ... ?
"Blowing a Flute Non-dualistic Contemplation Practice" - "Ascetic Bamboo Flute Practice"


This is a research project in continuous progress
- webpage updated on April 22, 2021.


OBS: A new, expanded webpage about this topic has been compiled and uploaded:

1950s ... : The Origin of 'Suizen' at Kyōto Myōan-ji:
     Kobayashi Shizan, Tomimori Kyozan,
     Tanikita Muchiku, Yasuda Tenzan,
     Hirazumi Taizan, Koizumi Ryōan,
     Fukumoto Kyoan, Yoshimura Sōshin a.o.





INTRODUCTION

From "ASCETIC BREATHING" to 'SUIZEN' - a PRELIMINARY TIMELINE


1823: The Kinko-line shakuhachi player Hisamatsu Fūyō explains his shakuhachi playing as 'Kisoku shugyō', 気息修行, "Breathing Asceticism".

1852: The 32nd Kyōto Myōan-ji 'Kansu', Rodō Genkyō, presents the term 'Sui-teki shugyō',
吹笛修行, "Blowing a Flute Ascetic Practice".
That was, in fact, especially with regard to begging activities in which only two players were allowed to travel together, states Rodō Genkyō.

1914, November 22: the 35th Myōan 'Kansu', Higuchi Taizan, founder of Myōan Taizan-ha, dies.
Kobayashi Kyozan is appointed the 36th 'Kansu'.

1928: Uramoto Setchō writes three essays on the topic 'Fuke Shakuhachi' but does not mention 'Suizen' there.

1928, March 15: 'Kyozan-bō', 虚山坊, most probably "Young Kyozan", alias Tomimori Kyozan, authors an article on pages 23-25 in the Myōan Kyōkai bulletin Dai Myōan, 大明暗, titled 'Sui-shō-zen' man-go', 吹簫禅漫語, "This and That about (the Term) 'Blowing a Flute Meditation'".

1930: Kobayashi Shizan & Tomimori Kyozan co-write a book on 'Myōan Shakuhachi',
in which the very first chapter is an introduction to that new term, 'Sui-shō-zen', 吹簫禅.

1938, November 27: The 36th Myōan 'Kansu', Kobayashi Kyozan, dies.
Tanikita Muchiku is appointed the 37th 'Kansu'.

1950: Yasuda Tenzan is appointed first head monk of the new Kyōto Myōan-ji.
Yasuda-san produces at least a few quite impressive 'Suizen' calligraphies.

1950s: Myōan-ji begins to issue so called 'Suizen gyōka-shō', 吹禅行化証,
"Ascetic Shakuhachi Travel Authorization Certificates" - see image and translation below.

During the early 1950s, it appears that at least these five Myōan-ji personalities would have been engaged in the creation, promotion and consolidation of the new Taizan-ha Shakuhachi term 'Suizen':
Yasuda Tenzan, Tanikita Muchiku, Tomimori Kyozan, Hirazumi Taizan & Yoshimura Sōshin.

1953: Hirazumi Taizan is appointed 2nd head monk of Myōan-ji; produces at least one impressive 'Suizen' calligraphy - see image below.

1955: Myōan-ji 'Kansu' Tanikita Muchiku publishes an article in the Myōan-ji bulletin named 'Suizen'.

1960: Parallelly, Uramoto Setchō introduces the explanatory term 'Gyō no ongaku', 行の音楽, "Ascetic Music" - however without referring to 'Suizen'.

1966, June: A now really famous 'Suizen' stone monument is erected to the left inside of the gate of Kyōto Myōan-ji.

1970s? - no later than Spring, 1978, I know:
Myōan-ji's 2nd head monk, Hirazumi Taizan, creates a unique 'Mu-ku-teki Suizen', 無穴笛吹禅, "No-holes-flute sui-zen' calligraphy - see below.

1974: The record company Columbia Japan releases a triple-LP record set titled 'Suizen', featuring Sakai Chikuhō II - who really was not a 'Taizan-ha' player, at all, was he?

Columbia Japan, Sakai Chikuhou II Suizen ichinyo 3 LP record set



1978, probably: The 40th Myōan-ji 'kansu, Yoshimura Fuan Sōshin, and Myōan-ji releases a 4-LP record set titled 'Suizen ichinyo', 吹禅一如, "The Oneness of 'Blowing a Flute' and 'Meditating'".
Or, I'd rather prefer a translation like this, for instance: "The Non-duality of Meditating while Blowing a Flute".
Yasuda Tenzan is the actual artist who created that very 'Suizen ichinyo' calligraphy for the LP front covers:

Yoshimura Soushin Suizen ichinyo 4 LP record set



1983: Torsten Olafsson produces the LP/MC "Standing Waves. Zen Shakuhachi Meditations" featuring six Myōan Taizan-ha (Suizen) honkyoku.
Olafssongs LP/MC, 1983; Fønix Music CD, 2001:

Standing Waves LP, 1983   Standing Waves CD, 2001



1985, reissued 1998: Columbia Japan releases a 'Fuke-shū Tani-ha Kyotaku'
     'Komusō Chiku-in Suizen' Vinyl Record

Columbia Japan Tani-ha Kyotaku Suizen vinyl LP record



1995: Yoshimura Fuan Sōshin's 'Suizen ichinyo' triple-CD set is issued by Myōan-ji, probably the same recordings as those previously published on 4 vinyl LP records in 1978.

Yoshimura Soushin Suizen ichinyo CD disc set, front cover



2004: Ronnie Seldin and Barbara Lee Kroos publish the 5-LP & book set
"Sui Zen. Blowing Zen On the Shakuhachi":

Seldin & Lee Kroos Sui Zen 5 LP + book set   Seldin & Lee Kroos Sui Zen 5 LP + book set



2005: Steve Weiss designs a map of "26 Suizen Temples", allegedly approved by Kurahashi Yoshio:

Map of 26 Suizen temples - late Tokugawa Period?

Map of 26 "'Suizen' temples" - during the late Tokugawa Period ... really?
Compiled by Steve Weiss, 2005, approved by Kurahashi Yoshio.

There were, of course, no such "'Suizen' temples" mentioned anywhere, nor ever,
in Edo Period documents! Source: www.shakuhachi.com



2019: Seian Genshin & Kyōto Myōan-ji produce the CD
'Nichi-nichi no Suizen', "Everyday Shakuhachi Asceticism":

Seian Genshin Myouan-ji Nichinichi no Suizen CD



To be continued, more to come - to be further detailed and elaborated ...





Was YASUDA TENZAN the ACTUAL "INVENTOR" of the TERM 'SUIZEN'?

This quite new term, 'Suizen', was most probably invented and introduced into modern ascetic shakuhachi ideology by Yasuda Tenzan, 安田天山, 1909-1994, while he was serving as the first head monk of the new, present-day Kyōto Myōan Temple during the years 1950 to 1952.

On Saturday August 8, 2009, US citizen and longtime Myōan Taizan-ha shakuhachi player Dean Seicho Delbene posted this illustration on his "Myoan Shakuhachi Blogspot" Website:

Tomimori Kyozan's Statement regarding the origin of the terms suizen/suishouzen,nodate

Tomimori Kyozan's Statement regarding the origin of the terms suizen/suishouzen, no date


Do note, by the way, that it can not be true at all, what Kyozan is quoted for stating, namely that,

" - - - 吹簫禅 (SuiShouZen) is right, that word was in old China."

Looking up under 'sui' in the main index of the Dai Kanwa Jiten encyclopedia of classical Chinese and Japanese literature and history you will find neither 'Sui-shō-zen' nor 'Suizen' there.

The very same goes for the great multi-volume collection of Buddhist scrptures, the Tripitaka,
c/o the online searchable SAT Daizōkyō Text Database:
Neither there do you find even one single appearance of the terms 'Sui-shō-zen', 吹簫禅, and 'Suizen', 吹禅 - simple as that.



Certainly only beginning in the early 1950s, various Suizen gyōka shō, 吹禅行化証, or "Ascetic Shakuhachi Travel Authorization Certificates", were issued by the Myōan Temple, replacing the former Komusō gyōka shō, 虚無僧行化証, of the latter part of the Edo Period.

Suizen gyōka seiganbun

'Suizen gyōka seiganbun', 吹禅行化誓願文,
"Ascetic Shakuhachi Written Travel Pledge" No prior to 1950.



The 'Suizen' Certificate Reads and Translates as follows:

吹禅行化誓願文
'Suizen gyōka suigammon'
"'Suizen' Travel Authorization Pledge"


一吹
為断一切悪
いっすい
いだん いっさい あく


'Issui i-dan issai aku'
"First breath cuts away All Evil"


二吹
為修一切善
にすい
いしゅ いっさい ぜん


'Nisui isshū issai zen'
"Second breath leads towards All Goodness"


三吹
為度諸衆生
さんすい
いど しょ しゅう じょう


'Sansui ido sho shū jō'
"Third breath benefits Mankind and All Livings Things"


皆共成仏道
かいぐ じょうぶつ どう


'Kaigu jōbutsu dō'
"The Way for Everyone to Attain Buddhahood"


嘘霊山明暗寺

'Kyoreizan Myōanji
"Non-dual Spirit Mountain Myōanji"


The source of the above given text, it should be noted, is the website of the Kyōto Myōan Temple named Myōan dōshukai, 明暗導主会: Myōan dōshukai



Mu-ku-teki Suizen      Myōan Taizan signature & seal

'MU-KU-TEKI SUI-ZEN'
"No Hole Flute - Blowing a Flute Non-dualistic Contemplation Practice"

Calligraphy signed 'Myōan Taizan', the 2nd present times
Myōan Temple chief monk Hirazumi Taizan, 平住台山, (a.k.a. Myōan Taizan),
inaugurated in 1952, died in 1984 (Shōwa 59).

Signature and stamps deciphered by Kosuge Daisetsu (Komusō kenkyūkai/Hosshin-ji),
and Sato Nakazato, Japan. A present to Torsten Olafsson
given by his teacher Ozawa Seizan in Summer, 1978




1985

The Tantric symbol 'A' & 'Suizen godo'

Opening pages of a honkyoku folding book (ori-hon)
written by Matsumoto Kyozan, dated 1985.

To the right: 'Suizen godō':
"Suizen Way of Buddhist Enlightenment".

To the left the Sanskrit seed syllable 'A' (Jap.: 'A')
of the Buddha Mahāvairocana, or
Dainichi Nyorai, residing in the center of the
Taizō-kai (Womb Realm) mandala (Skt.: Garbhadātu)
of Japanese Tantric Buddhism (Shingon)
Trsl. by Torsten Olafsson


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