[Speaker] Teaching Buddhism through Calligraphy

Pu Yin Lecture Series talk by Prof. Chia-lin Pao Tao

4 to 5:30 p.m., April 13, 2023

Please join us on Thursday, April 13 at 4 pm (Arizona Time) in the Copper Room at the Student Union for the next lecture of the Pu Yin Lecture Series! A reception will follow. This is a hybrid (in-person/online) event.

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Time and Location:
Time: 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm (Arizona Time)
Location: Student Union, Copper Room

Talk title: 
Teaching Buddhism through Calligraphy

Dr. Chia-lin Pao Tao, University of Arizona

Chinese calligraphy is the most popular form of Chinese art. It has been developed for over three thousand years and has numerous styles. Some Buddhist masters chose to use calligraphy as a vehicle to give blessings and to teach Buddhism. Quotations from sutras and admonitions for doing good are all food for thought for the general public. Copying sutras with a brush is widely practiced even after printing was invented. This lecture will focus on three masters. The talented Master Hongyi (1880-1942) taught students how to write with a brush. He advocated the protection of all sentient beings and promoted a vegetarian lifestyle. Master Hsing-yun (1927-2023), an epoch-making Buddhist leader, ignited the “Endless lamp” and enabled the Buddhist light to shine throughout the five continents with his calligraphy. His work for new year blessings has been widely distributed all over the world. When he became blind he continued to write the “One-stroke characters” to continue his teaching and blessings. Master Lin Yun (1932-2010), a Tantric Buddhist master, was especially good at calligraphy and wrote in numerous styles including oracle bone scripts. His colorful brush work combined calligraphy with painting on both paper and silk and in both classical and vernacular Chinese.

Speaker Bio: Dr. Chia-lin Pao Tao published two books on this subject in Chinese: Teaching Buddhism Through Calligraphy: Masters Hsing-yun and Hongyi and Master Lin Yun’s Calligraphy on Doing Good Deeds: A Creative Art. EHGbooks, 2022.

This lecture series is made possible thanks to the generous support from the Pu Yin Educational Center.

This event is co-sponsored by CEAS.

Image of Dr. Chia-lin Pao Tao with Calligraphy