Discover Japanese Buddhism
Tendai Buddhism UK Midlands Branch
We are a traditional and official lineage of Tendai Buddhism in the UK. Anyone is welcome to join us for meetings, meditation, chanting, and teaching.
As well as the importance of study and practice, the main principles we uphold are Ekayana and Upaya, thus we recognise and appreciate the myriad forms of practices and philosophies that are better suited to different people. We don’t claim to hold the only true way, we simply present Tendai Buddhism to the western audience with respect to our time-honoured tradition.
A Traditional Lineage
The Tendai Shu (天台宗) is a school of Japanese Buddhism that is over 1200 years old. It was founded by Saicho (Dengyo Daishi 伝教大師) after he had travelled to China to bring back the Lotus Sutra teachings of the T’ien-t’ai School in 805CE. Based on the Ekayana principle found in the Lotus Sutra, the Tendai School utilises a wide range of practices, such as prostrations, meditation, chanting, shomyo, esoteric and pureland practices, in order to bring people to enlightenment.
Although Tendai has its roots in the past, its teachings and principles are still applicable today, and by entering this tradition you become part of that stream of knowledge. Although traditional, we recognise that the UK is not Japan, and so some of the more cultural aspects may not be applicable, however instead of disregarding all these aspects, we try to adapt in order to bring these practices to people in an accessible way, so that we all may benefit from the Tendai teachings.
Our Sangha continues to maintain its link to the founders of Tendai, but also finds its place in today’s world. This, along with the focus on Upaya helps Tendai UK provide a method of personal liberation in the modern western world. In this way, we aim to uphold 一隅を照らす Ichigu wo Terasu: Light Up One Corner – meaning we try to illuminate our corner of the world.
May all beings be happy!
“The path broadens people, people broaden the path. Within the will to enlightenment food and clothing exist, but the will to enlightenment is not found in food and clothing.”
Denjutsu-Isshin-Kaimon ; The Record of the Precepts in a Mind
Some 20 years ago the late Rev Ganshin Rock (Ten’ei Ganshin Koji 天英巌真居士), having studied and been ordained in Japan under Rev Prof Shoshin Ichishima, moved back to England to bring Tendai Buddhism to the UK.
He found the Yakushi-do in his private residence where he held weekly meetings as well as disseminating “The Teaching of Buddha” on behalf of the Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai.
On the 31st July 2013 Ganshin ordained Rev Seishin Clark with the blessings of Rev Prof Ichishima. Sadly, Ganshin passed away on 1st September 2014, aged 88.
As requested and under the tutelage of Rev Prof Ichishima, Rev Seishin now leads the services and meditations.