Both Japanese kanji in stroke order; and, Japanese kanji with English were the topics of earlier blog posts. Kukai 空海, “Sango Shiiki (三教指帰)”, 797 AD was the first book published by the Buddhist monk Kukai 空海. Legend has it that Kukai is the inventor of the “phonetic syllabary” used in writing the Japanese language. The Japanese script referred to as “kana” are used in pair with “kanji (Chinese ideographs). “Hiragana” form of “kana” are shown in the chart below:
Kukai 空海, “Sango Shiiki (三教指帰)”, 797 AD was published when Kukai 空海 was 24 years-old; and, he was born 27 May 774 AD. “Sango Shiiki” is a comparative, ideological critique of three religions (Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism). Kukai lived to be 60 years-old; he died at Mont Koya, Japan on 22 April 835 AD. The legacy of Kukai is certainly “linguistic”; as, Kukai’s script is used to this day in writing the Japanese language. Indology is Kukai’s 空海 greatest strength; and, the Sanskrit script (shown BELOW) is what Kukai 空海 modeled Japanese kana on.
Kentoshi (遣唐使) Kanmu-Dezong was a diplomatic mission between the Emperor of Japan-China in 804 AD. Kukai 空海 was one of the secretaries of the Japanese ambassador of the 804 AD Kentoshi (遣唐使) Kanmu-Dezong when Kukai 空海 was 31 years old. Publishing, printed writings in Japanese was part of Kukai 空海 legacy.