Congratulations Are in Order!

Congratulations to Professor Paul Swanson of the Nanzan Institute for Religion and Culture for receiving the 2019 Toshihide Numata Book Award. Professor Swanson received the award for his text, Clear Serenity, Quiet Insight: T’ien-t’ai Chih-i’s Mo-ho chih-kuan. The three-volume work is published as part of the Nanzan Library of Asian Religion and Culture, from the University of Hawai’i Press.

On December 6, Dr. George Tanabe, President of BDK America, made the presentation to Professor Swanson at a special symposium hosted by the Center for Buddhist Studies. The Center administers the selection process each year. This year the event was held on the University of California, Berkeley campus in the Banatao Auditorium. 

Dr. Robert Sharf, Chair of the Center for Buddhist Studies, served as master of ceremonies, welcomed the attendees, and introduced the symposium presenters. First, with the Keynote Address, was Professor Swanson, and continued with presentations by Professors John Kieschnick (Stanford University), and Jacqueline Stone (Princeton University). 

From the Selection Committee

Reviewers on the committee praised the work as "a landmark,” “a formidable achievement,” “a masterwork of scholarship,” and “the fruit of mature and sustained scholarship of the highest level.” In its summary, the Center noted "Swanson’s erudite and lucid translations, his deft handling of complex Tiantai concepts, and the rich and comprehensive annotation that runs through all three volumes." 

The Toshihide Numata Book Award in Buddhism

To further support the advancement of Buddhist studies in the western world, BDK established the Toshihide Numata Book Award in Buddhism in 2009. The prize contest is coordinated by the Center for Buddhist Studies at the University of California, Berkeley and the winning entry for best academic Buddhist title of the year is selected by an independent committee. The Toshi Prize, as it is sometimes called, consists of a cash award, a public lecture by the winning author and a panel discussion on the topic of the winning entry, held in Berkeley each year after the winning entry is announced. Learn more about the award here.

About the Center for Buddhist Studies. At the University of California, Berkeley, the Center for Buddhist Studies oversees research programs, scholarly events, and outreach activities, both on and off campus. Learn more about the Center here

See the Center's announcement of the 2019 award here


Professor Paul L. Swanson is a Permanent Fellow of the Nanzan Institute for Religion & Culture, Faculty of Humanities, Nanzan University.



Dr. George Tanabe, Professor Emeritus of Religion at the University of Hawaii, is the President of BDK America and BDK Hawaii.



Dr. Robert H Sharf is the D. H. Chen Distinguished Professor of Buddhist Studies, Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures at UC Berkeley. 



The late Rev. Toshihide Numata, namesake of the Numata Prize, served as the Chairman of Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai from 1994 until his death in 2017 at the age of 84. Learn more about his legacy here.