The Description of Buddhist Dreams in Kagerō Nikki and Sarashina Nikki

Yan Chen

Female writers in Heian Period such as Michitsuna no Haha, Sugawara no Takasue no Musume and etcetera wrote a lot of religon-related diaries. They were vegetarian at home, made pilgrimages to temples outside the capital city and recorded the Buddhist Dreams they had. Because of their writings, we are able to understand the status of noble women’s the Buddhist belief at that time. On one hand, they sought spiritual comfort from Buddhism when they were confronted with mental distress; on the other hand, they always focused their attention on secular life. Their literary writing benefited both from the tolerant creative environment and the free religious environment. The dilemma in reality aroused their strong self-consciousness and such such self-consciousness was effectively expressed via prose and diaries, which are ideal for detailed narration. Although Buddhist religous-related descriptions appeared in their writings, they always focused on the secular world and the inner self. After all, Buddhist belief was only an external reference when they expressed themselves.


Biography:

Yan 1977-)is an Associate professor in College of Foreign Languages, Fujian Normal University. She received he Ph.D. in 2010, Beijin Foreign Studies University. Her research interest is classical Japanese literature.

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