Universiteit Leiden

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Henny van der Veere

University Lecturer Japanese Studies / Religion Studies

Dr. H. van der Veere
+31 71 527 2551

Henny van der Veere is a University Lecturer at the Leiden University Institute for Area Studies.

More information about Henny van der Veere


  • Study of Japanese esoteric Buddhism, especially the relationship between oral transmissions and textstudies pertaining to both ritual and doctrine
  • Continuity in pilgrimage culture on the Shikoku pilgrimage
  • The ideas of Kogyo Daishi Kakuban and the reformulation of Shingon Buddhism in the 12th century


In the domain of “Japanese Religion and Buddhism” I can supervise a range of subjects. My research covers three fields within the larger domain: doctrinal studies (including philosophy), ritual traditions and systems of knowledge (especially esoteric Buddhism), and pilgrimages. My approaches are, depending on the case, synchronic and/or diachronic. I would be willing to supervise theses on subjects related to these fields. Examples are: Contemporary Japanese society, NRM’s, Tendai/Shingon history and ritual lore, Yamabushi,  Shikoku pilgrimage and so on.



  • Studied Indology (1974-1979) and Japanese (1979-1986) at Leiden University
  • MA (Drs) in Japanese Studies, at Leiden University (1986)
  • from 1995: research assistant and lecturer
  • PhD in 1998 at Leiden University after doing research in Japan at Taisho University for two years (1989-1990 and 1996-1997)
  • From 1992 on research of Shingon Buddhism for which the full training for Shingon priests and full initiation (1996) became necessary
  • Connected to research into pilgrimage became a religious guide for the Shikoku pilgrimage


1985-present: Lecturer at Leiden University
1985-1989: language teacher Erasmus University Rotterdam
1989-1990: guest researcher at Taisho Univerity Tokyo
Between 1992 and 2003 for longer spells, in total about five years: head of the branch of the centre for Japanese Studies in Huis ten Bosch, Nagasaki
1996-1997: guest researcher and lecturer at Taisho University Tokyo

Other relevant activities

Lectures on Buddhism and Shikoku pilgrimage


Key publications

  • 1992 "Kakuban Shonin: The life and works of Kogyo Daishi Kakuban", Tokyo.
  • 1995 with K.R. van Kooy (eds): "Function and Meaning in Buddhist Art", Groningen, sept.
  • 1998 with M. Teeuwen: "Nakatomi Harae Kunge: Purification and Enlightenment in Late-Heian Japan", Buddhist Studies 1, Iudicium-verlag, Munchen.
  • 1998 An Investigation into the Thought of Kogyo Daishi Kakuban; with a translation of his Gorin kuji myo himitsushaku, Ph.D. dissertation, Leiden.
  • 1998 Sokushin jobutsu e no michi-Kakuban Shoninden, Nombre, Tokyo .
  • 1999. with M. Teeuwen: "The Purification Formula of the Nakatomi" in Religions of Japan in Practice, George J. Tanabe, Jr. (ed), Princeton University Press, pp. 210-220.
  • 2000 A Study into the Thought of Kogyo Daishi Kakuban; with a translation of his 'Gorin kuji myo himitsushaku', Japonica Neerlandica Series 7, Hotei Publishing, Leiden. ISBN 90-74822-23-1.
  • 2003 Gorin kuji myohimitsu shaku no kenkyu (A study of GKMS with a full revision of the Chinese text based on relevant manuscripts) trsl. Shiraishi Ryokai Nombre-sha, Tokyo; ISBN4-931117-76-7 C0015
  • 2003. BOEDDHA'S EN KAMI, De ontwikkeling van de Japanse religie
    Amsterdam University Press, Amsterdam
  • "The Teaching strategies of Kakuban Shōnin, A new reading of Chōganbō Shōō's Uchigikishū", in: Essays on Sanskrit and Buddhist Culture, Tokyo feb 2007, pp.599- 628.
  • "The Origin of the Fodingzun sheng tuoluoni and its place in the development of Buddhist thought in China", in Esoteric Buddhist Studies: Identity in Diversity, Proceedings of the International conference on Esoteric Buddhist Studies, Koyasan University, 5 sept-8 sept 2006, Executive Committee, ICEBS, Koyasan University, March 2008, pp. 63-66.

University Lecturer Japanese Studies / Religion Studies

  • Faculty of Humanities
  • Leiden Institute for Area Studies
  • SAS Japan

Work address

Matthias de Vrieshof
Matthias de Vrieshof 2
2311 BZ Leiden
Room number 2.04a



No relevant ancillary activities

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