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Paperback: $20.00 $5.00
ISBN-13: 9781885445025
Published: March 2010

Charisma and Community Formation in Medieval Japan: The Case of the Yugyo-ha (1300-1700)

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  • The Yugyô-ha achieved success by basing its religious authority on a combination of Pure Land mysticism and the practices of fundraising hijiri. Between 1300 and 1700, the Pure Land Buddhist religious order known as the Ippen school Yugyô-ha (later the Jishu) established itself as the leading representative of nembutsu propagation in Japan. The theme of the order’s history is the development of religious authority as a result of the struggle to normalize relations among the official head, sometimes obstreperous religious, and often interfering (usually warrior) lay patrons. This study demonstrates the value of the articulation in organizational studies of Weber’s concept of charisma as a successful social relationship as well as that of a chosen career determined by culture and tradition. Indeed, the success of the Yugyô-ha was due to its ability to seize on the advantages of combining the principles and practices of two existing traditions, Pure Land mysticism and the fundraising hijiri movement.