Zen Buddhism is closely associated with the Japanese tea ceremony. It was at
its height during the culture of Kyoto. Kyoto had by then ceased to be a
political capital and had become a cultural captial instead.
The focus of
Zen then was actually used as a political philosophy, It was also used to
treated the problems of the individual. It was a religion meant for the
protection of a Japanese state.
The statue of the Great Buddha was built at
Nara. It was then the capital and centre of the country from 710 to 794. This
Buddha had symbolic meaning and was built there for the purpose of the
defence of the country.
In the Heian period the nobles in Kyoto was led by
the powerful Fujiwara clan and they made Buddhism a private religion and it
centred on the institutions of the powerful clan.
The Zen Priests believed that reality was fantasty and illusion and that
life was a dream. This resulted in the fact that many Buddhists had their
names associated with mu dream or gen illusion.