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Faxian, archetype of the Buddhist pilgrim?

Portrait from Bingling monastery showing Faxian with his name

Portrait from Bingling monastery
showing Faxian with his name

by Jean-Pierre Drège, Director of Studies Emeritus, EPHE, CRCAO.

Considered to be one of the three great Chinese travelers who traveled to India in search of the remains of Buddhism and the texts of this religion, the monk Faxian (circa 340-around 420) is also the first of this triad, in the chronological order, with Xuanzang (602-664) and Yijing (635-713).
If the second became the ideal pilgrim, haloed by a glory gained during his lifetime, Faxian remains a pioneer whose course deserves to be revisited.

LECTURE at 6pm at La Maison d’Asie, 22, Avenue du président Wilson, 75016 Paris

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