Pis unique work is a pioneering attempt to unravel the mystery around Bodhidharma, the enigmatic founder of Chan (Zen) and Shaolin Kung-Fa. The two-volume research attempts a first of its kind comprehensive study on Bodhidharma’s life and legend in both India and China-tracing his journey from a remote geographical location in the Southern part of India called Mt. Sailam, to the immensely popular Shaolin temple in Northern China.
Volume 1 is devoted to a study on Bodhidharma’s life in China. Contrary to the belief of certain modern scholarship that has reduced Bodhidharma to a mythical figure, the material presented first proves that historically, there lived a monk named Bodhidharma. The work then goes on to ascertain his role in importing, propagating and essentially founding the culture of Chan (Zen) and Shaolin Kung-Fa. In a revolutionary effort, by drawing several parallels between the culture of Chan and Indian esoteric Buddhism, the study proves that Shaolin Kung-Fa finds its roots in Indian Hatha Yoga. In the process, several historical ‘black boxes’ have been scrutinized, leading to some radical findings that are certain to go against a few deep-rooted beliefs related to the life of Bodhidharma and provide a paradigm shift in this field of research.