Pinyin: Tiāntái sìjiào yí
Korean MC: Cheontae sagyo ui
Korean MR: Ch'ŏnt'ae sagyo ŭi
Hepburn: Tentai shikyō gi
Outline of the Tiantai Fourold Teachings
Significant portions of the canon were, however, largely extant in both Korea and Japan, and thus King Wuyue sent emissaries to both countries in an attempt to procure this, and other texts. On the order of the Goryeo king, Chegwan headed for Mt. Tiantai in the Song with a number of treatises and commentaries, leaving out the three major commentaries 天台三大部 of the Tiantai school. Also, according to the king's order, he was not to bring the Commentary on the Dazhidu lun 智度論疏, the Bones and Eyes of the Flower Ornament 華嚴骨目 (T 1742), the Five Hundred Questions 五百問論 (Z 939), and so forth. Furthermore, he was given orders to the effect that if the masters on Mt. Tiantai did not properly respond to his questions, he was to pack up all of his texts and return home. However, upon arriving to Mt. Tiantai and having an audience with Luoxi Yiji, they quickly gained each other's respect. It is said that he kept the Sagyo ui (which he had already written) hidden secretly in the bottom of his bag, but subsequent to his passing away after a ten year stay in Louxi, a light suddenly shone forth from his satchel, revealing the existence of this text.
Contents: The Sagyo ui starts off by outlining the five periods and eight teachings 五時八教. The five periods represent the Tiantai school's understanding of the sequence of the Buddha's sermons, starting from the Flower Ornament Period 華嚴時, going up to the Deep Park Period 鹿苑時, Vaipulya Period 方等時, Prajñā Period 般若時, and Lotus-Nirvāṇa Period 法華涅槃時. The four methods 化儀 of teaching—i.e., the pedagogical approaches—are those of sudden 頓教, gradual 漸教, secret 祕密教, and variable 不定教. The four kinds of content, which are provided in response to the capacities of the sentient beings in the audience, are those of the Tripiṭaka Teaching 藏教, Shared Teaching 通教, Distinct Teaching 別教, and Perfect Teaching 圓教. Next, the four pedagogical formats are juxtaposed with the first four teaching periods 前四時 (Huayan through Prajñā Periods). The sudden teaching is explained as having been delivered first in the form of the Huayan jing, as the direct content of the Buddha's enlightenment experience. The Buddha takes up the gradual approach after realizing that too many sentient beings could not grasp the prior sudden teaching, and thus he endeavors to re-adjust by starting off with relatively simple teachings, and gradually advancing to more advanced concepts and practices. This is accomplished by articulating, in sequence, the teachings of the Deer Park Period 鹿苑時 (represented by the Āgama sūtras 阿含經), the Vaipulya Period 方等時 (represented by the Vimalakīrti-sūtra 淨名經 and so forth); the Prajñā Period 般若時 (represented by the Prajñāpāramitā sūtras 般若經). The secret teaching occurs when the Buddha guides one person in the audience with the sudden teaching, and another person with the gradual, with each gaining his own benefit, without them being aware of this difference in what they are learning. In the variable teaching, while the Buddha delivers a single message, each understands according to his or her own level in an indeterminate manner. Next, in the Lotus phase, he delivers a teaching which is neither sudden nor gradual.
Chegwan next explains the five flavors 五味 (milk 乳, cream 酪, buttermilk 生酥, butter 熟酥, and ghee 醍醐), as metaphors for the five time periods. This is followed by a detailed examination of the four kinds of content, wherein the content of the Tripiṭaka Teaching is identified as: (1) as the sutra collection 修多羅藏 (Āgamas and so forth); (2) the Abhidharma collection 阿毘曇藏 (including the Abhidharmakośa-bhāṣya, Mahāvibhāṣā-śāstra 大毘婆沙論 and so forth; (3) the Vinaya collection 毘尼藏 (including the five main Vinaya compilations 五部律), all three of which are studied in both Hīnayāna and Mahāyāna, but he limits his discussion to the Hīnayāna aspect. Next he explains the meaning of the Shared Teaching 通教, wherein the content of the Tripiṭaka teaching is also contained within the subsequent Distinct and Perfect Teachings. Next is the explanation of the Distinct Teaching 別教, which is distinct in the sense that it is clearly limited in its application to the teaching for bodhisattvas who have already succeeded in going beyond the limitations of cyclic existence 界外. It is distinct in that it differs from the prior two teachings, as well as the subsequent Perfect Teaching in terms of its doctrine 教理, wisdom and elimination 智斷, stages of practice 行位, and causes and results 因果. Next he elucidates the Perfect Teaching, which is perfect in terms of subtlety 圓妙, fulfillment 圓滿, completeness 圓足, and suddenness 圓頓. It perfectly rescues sentient beings through perfect quelling 圓伏, perfect faith 圓信, perfect elimination 圓斷, perfect practices 圓行, perfect stages 圓位, and perfect adornment 圓自在莊嚴. All of the sutras and treatises, all buddha-realms that are explained, and all the levels of practice of the three vehicles are subsumed under this teaching.
He next moves to the discussion of the twenty-five expedient preparations 二十五方便, as well as the ten methods of contemplation 十乘觀法, which are outlined briefly. He finishes up by pointing out that his rough summary of the five periods and eight teachings can be studied in full detail in the Fahua xuanyi 法華玄義 (T 1716) as well as the Jingming xuanyi 淨名玄義 (T 1777). Zhipan 志磐, the author of the Fozu tongji 佛祖統紀 （T 2035), advocates this text to be a revision of the Tiantai bajiao dayi 天台八教大意 (T 1930).
As for commentarial works on this text, there are the Sijiaoyi jijie 四教儀集解 by Congyi 從義 (1042–1091) Song), the Sijiaoyi beishi 四教儀備釋 by Yuancui 元粹 (1042–1091), and the Sijiaoyi jizhu 四教儀集註 by Mengrun 蒙潤 (1275–1342). English translation by A. Charles Muller as Outline of the Tiantai Fourfold Teachings in The Collected Works of Korean Buddhism (Jogye Jong), vol. VI, and by David Chappell et.al, as T'ien-T'ai Buddhism: An Outline of the Fourfold Teachings (University of Hawai`i Press, 1984).[resp. Charles Muller; source(s): JEBD, Iwanami, JEBD]
Bukkyō jiten (Ui), 757
Bulgyo sajeon, 848a
Chūgoku bukkyōshi jiten (Kamata), 266
Fo Guang Dictionary, 1341
Iwanami bukkyō jiten, 595
Japanese-English Buddhist Dictionary (Daitō shuppansha), 316a/351
Bussho kaisetsu daijiten (Ono), ⑧122b/⑧122c, ⑬93c* (昭和校訂)
Bukkyō daijiten (Mochizuki), (v.1-6)3796c
Bukkyō daijiten (Oda), 1252-3
Copyright © 2010 -- Charles Muller