The 7th International Conference Buddhism & Australia
Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia Illustrations
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[善無畏] (637–735) (PY Shanwuwei; Skt Shubhakarasimha; Jpn Zemmui)
The Indian monk who first introduced Esoteric Buddhism to China. Shanwuwei is his Chinese name. Born a prince in Udyana (Udra according to another account) in India, he became king at age thirteen. He abdicated the throne, however, in favor of a jealous elder brother and entered the Buddhist Order. He studied Esoteric Buddhism under Dharmagupta at Nalanda Monastery. In 716 he went to China and was welcomed by Emperor Hsüan-tsung of the T'ang dynasty, who named him teacher of the nation. There Shanwuwei translated a number of esoteric scriptures, including the (Mahavairochana sutra) and Susiddhikara sutras.