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About Kukechu Translation Projects

The purpose of Kukechu Translation Projects is to promote the translation of Chinese and Japanese Buddhist texts into English, in particular the works of Tiantai Zhiyi. Ways to support and promote such translation work is under consideration.

Organizer, Producer, and Translator
Paul L. Swanson

Paul is an MK (“missionary kid”) born and raised in Japan. He has four children and one wife, is a Bob Dylan freak, edits the Japanese Journal of Religious Studies, and has lost the battle against an expanding waistline and becoming a “senior citizen.” He did his graduate studies at Sophia University, the University of Tokyo, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His dual areas of specialization are Japanese Religions (Shugendo) and Buddhist Studies (T’ien-t’ai/Tendai Buddhism). His publications include:

Foundations of T’ien-t’ai Philosophy, a study of the threefold truth as the basic structure of T’ien-t’ai Buddhist philosophy, including an annotated translation of part of the Fa-hua hsuan-i.
Religion and Society in Modern Japan, a collection of essays intended for use as a textbook for classes on Japanese religions
Pruning the Bodhi Tree, a collection of essays on “Critical Buddhism”
If you teach me Japanese, I’ll teach you English, a guide to exchanging languages
Nanzan Guide to Japanese Religions, edited with Clark Chilson

Clear Serenity, Quiet Insight: T’ien-t’ai Chih-i’s Mo-ho chih-kuan, a complete annotated translation of one of the most influential treatises in East Asian Buddhism, in 3 volumes.

In Search of Clarity: Essays on Translation and Tiantai Buddhism (Chisokudo, 2018), a compilation of essays written while working on translations over the past 30 years

Titles in Vietnamese:
Thien & Chi Quan

Thien Thai Tong

Paul’s current projects include:

  • translating the T'ien-t'ai texts (『法華玄義』) into English (for previous translation of the Mo-ho chih-kuan 『摩詞止観』 and see Clear Serenity, Quiet Insight).

  • A translation of the "Records of the Temple of National Purity" 
    『国清百録』is forthcoming from the BDK.

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