September 25, 2021

Hills of Silver Ruins (2/30)

Sodou is a daoshi (道士), a Taoist monk or priest.

The different Taoist sects described in this chapter appear analogous to the schools of Mahayana and Vajrayana or Esoteric Buddhism. A similar schism occurred in the early Middle Ages during what I call Japan's "Protestant Reformation." For Nichiren, Japan's Martin Luther,

religious ideals were inseparable from society and had to be realized in society. Salvation could not be achieved only at the level of individual meditation, because, first, no individual exists by himself, and secondly, because a living being can only realize itself through action and not by mere spiritual activity

In Chinese mythology, the Ten Kings of Hell (十王) judge the sins of the dead and determine how they will be reborn in the next life, a "Buddhist concept modified by Taoism and indigenous folk beliefs."

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September 18, 2021

Hills of Silver Ruins (2/29)

I've posted chapter 29 (book 2) of Hills of Silver Ruins, a Pitch Black Moon.

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September 11, 2021

Hills of Silver Ruins (2/28)

Winter weapons (冬器) are so called because they are commissioned by the Ministry of Winter and are often imbued with magical properties that make them especially effective against youma and wizards.

September 04, 2021

Hills of Silver Ruins (2/27)

The role of the Queen Mother of the West (西王母) is discussed in chapter 42 of Shadow of the Moon and chapter 33 of A Thousand Leagues of Wind. Risai meets her in chapter 44 of The Shore in Twilight.

A screen wall or spirit screen (影壁) shielded the entranceway in traditional Chinese architecture. Because evil spirits were believed incapable of moving around corners, a spirit wall blocked them from entering the gate.

A barbican (甕城) is a fortified gateway situated outside the main line of defense and connected to the castle with a walled road or tunnel.

The kyoushu (拱手) gesture should be familiar to anybody who's watched enough wuxia action movies.

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