Guanzong yanjiu she 觀宗研究社

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The Guānzōng Research Society (Guānzōng yánjiù shè 觀宗研究社) was an influential early Buddhist seminary 佛學院 associated with Dìxián 諦閑.


Established in 1918 by Dìxián 諦閑, this school was also known as the Guānzōng Study Society 觀宗學社. Dìxián was both the principal and one of the main instructors there until his death in 1932. The curriculum of the standard three-year course initially focused exclusively on the study of Buddhist scripture. The first class of students included Tàixū 太虛, Rénshān 仁山, Chángxǐng 常惺, and Bǎojìng 寶靜. When they completed their studies in 1921, the Society disbanded. Bǎojìng then requested that Dìxián allow the Society to become a full-fledged school. The name was changed and after that point it was known as either the Dharma Propagation Research Society 弘法研究社, or the Dharma Propagation Academy 弘法學院. Bǎojìng oversaw the school from 1921 to 1923.

The Society began publishing its own journal in 1928, called the Periodical of the Dharma Propagation Society 弘法社刊. It was published there until 1932.

Monks began studying traditional Chinese literature and other subjects from 1929.[1]

Section Editor: Erik Hammerstrom

Notable Students


  • Shì Dōngchū 釋東初. Zhōngguó Fójiào jìndài shǐ 中國佛教近代史 (A History of Early Contemporary Chinese Buddhism), in Dōngchū lǎorén quánjí 東初老人全集 (Complete Collection of Old Man Dongchu), vols. 1-2. Taipei: Dongchu, 1974 Pp. 1.204.
  • Welch, Holmes. The Buddhist Revival in China. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1968. Pp. 108-110.
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