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Living KarmaThe Religious Practices of Ouyi Zhixu$
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Beverley McGuire

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780231168021

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: November 2015

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231168021.001.0001

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(p.125) Conclusion
Living Karma

Beverley Foulks McGuire

Columbia University Press

This chapter concludes that Ouyi Zhixu's “lived karma” underscores the importance of ordinary daily practice and customs of behavior. He engages in disciplined practices of daily self-cultivation to ethically and spiritually transform himself into a being that might liberate other beings. Instead of becoming a morally upstanding person solely in his present life, Ouyi seeks to develop himself into a being for others—a bodhisattva—who might aid sentient beings in his present and future lives. Karma not only motivates his religious practice but also has transformative potential, which is underscored in his votive texts and bodily practice as he uses his body, speech, and mind to strengthen his resolve to become a bodhisattva. In addition, Ouyi applies karma to himself and his own circumstances; he does not presume to judge the karma of others.

Keywords:   Ouyi Zhixu, lived karma, self-cultivation, bodhisattva, sentient beings, karma

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