Richard McBride - Associate Professor of History, Brigham Young University-Hawai'i
In contemporary Korean Buddhism, the Koryŏ prince and monk Ŭich’ŏn (1055–1101) is primarily remembered as the founder of the Ch’ŏnt’ae school, Korea’s Tiantai (Tendai) tradition. However, a close reading of Ŭich’ŏn’s writings contained in his Collected Works demonstrates that Ŭich’ŏn did not relinquish is membership and prestigious position in the powerful Hwaŏm school (Ch. Huayan, Jpn. Kegon) to found Ch’ŏnt’ae in Koryŏ. His life and writings rather show the close relationship between doctrinal learning and meditative visualization, and accounts of his life provide hints on the complex relationship between these two traditions, which are known as the “twin jewels” of Sinitic doctrinal Buddhism.