I am a Ph.D. candidate specializing in Chinese Buddhist studies.
My current research is an intellectual history examining the intersection of Indic and indigenous Chinese cosmologies in medieval Chinese Buddhism. I explore developments and discontinuities in Chinese Buddhists’ efforts to locate self, society, and geography within wider pre-existing frameworks of Indic and Chinese imagined space and mythical time. I treat a diverse array of texts, murals, and maps whose productions range from the Six Dynasties (220-589) to the Song (960-1279), from the sand swept caves of Dunhuang to elite temples of central China, and from the hands of anonymous local scribes to imperially sponsored scholar-monks. Cutting across space, time, and genre, these materials demonstrate a persistent concern among Chinese Buddhists to understand, negotiate, and reconcile the seen and unseen worlds, their place in the cosmos and in history, and their relationship to the life of the Buddha and Chinese culture heroes.
I completed my Master of Arts degree in the field of History and Ethnography of Religions in the Department of Religion at Florida State University in 2012. My M.A. thesis, “Education, Invention of Orthodoxy, and the Construction of Modern Buddhism on Dharma Drum Mountain,” is an historical and ethnographic examination of Buddhist education in the late Qing (1644-1911), Republican China (1912-1949), and twentieth-century Taiwan with emphasis on a contemporary Taiwanese Buddhist organization.