Yoka Daishi's Realizing the Way

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Pub Date: 05/07/2019

Pages: 288

Trim: 5 x 8

Publisher: Global Book Sales

Imprint: The Buddhist Society

ISBN 13: 9780901032454

ISBN 10: 090103245X

Price: $17.95 / $23.99 CAN

Yoka Daishi's Realizing the Way

By Yoka Daishi, Venerable Myokyo-ni

Price: $17.95



About the Book

In this volume, The Buddhist Society presents Yoka Daishi’s Realizing the Way, a T’ang Dynasty Chinese text known as Zhang Dao Ge, or Shodōka in Japanese. This 12th century Japanese edition has been translated by the Venerable Myokyo-ni and accompanied throughout by her own commentary on the text. The sixty-seven verses of Yoka Daishi’s Song on the Realization of the Way lie at the heart of the Zen approach to Mahayana thought and symbolise the germ of the Buddha-nature inherent in all sentient beings – hidden and dormant, but containing the potential and promise of liberation. The title, which is variously translated, is most commonly known as ‘The Song of Enlightenment’. With vivid imagery and striking turns of phrase, these verses weave in and out of the various Mahayana doctrines. Each section of the Song, which The Venerable Myokyo-ni describes as ‘a very carefully considered and expounded summary that has the whole of the teaching in it’, is accompanied here by her extensive and illuminating commentary.

About the Book

A translation of, and commentary upon, Song on the Realization of the Way, a key Zen text exploring Mahayana thought.


Yoka Gengaku Daishi (665–713), or Yongjia Xuanjue as he is known in Chinese, was a Zen scholar and monk, who belongs to the early period of the Zen School. He was born in Yongjia in Zhejiang Province, from where his name derives.