The Teeth and Claws of the Buddha: Monastic Warriors and Sohei in Japanese History, by Mikael S. Adolphson, is now available in paperback.
May 2007 / ISBN 978-0-8248-3123-3 / $24.00 (PAPER)
“Mikael Adolphson has presented the first cogent explanation of the role of violence in Japanese monasteries, interrogating the much-misunderstood role of the so-called warrior monks. Based on a wide and deep knowledge of primary sources, Adolphson has both advanced the scholarly understanding of the broader configurations of the samurai and has also done a fine job of dispelling many myths that persist in Japanese and Western popular culture. This is our first true picture of the various types of men who wielded arms on behalf of religious institutions—few of whom were actually monks.” —G. Cameron Hurst, University of Pennsylvania