Brian Victoria


Brian Victoria is a native of Omaha, Nebraska and a 1961 graduate of Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, Nebraska. He holds a MA in Buddhist Studies from Sōtō Zen sect-affiliated Komazawa University in Tokyo, and a PhD from the Department of Religious Studies at Temple University.

In addition to a second, enlarged edition of Zen At War (Rowman & Littlefield, 2006), Brian's major writings include Zen War Stories (RoutledgeCurzon, 2003); an autobiographical work in Japanese entitled Gaijin de ari, Zen bozu de ari (As a Foreigner, As a Zen Priest), published by San-ichi Shobo in 1971; Zen Master Dōgen, coauthored with Prof. Yokoi Yūhō of Aichi-gakuin University (Weatherhill, 1976); and a translation of The Zen Life by Sato Koji (Weatherhill, 1972). In addition, Brian has published numerous journal articles, focusing on the relationship of not only Buddhism but religion in general, to violence and warfare.

From 2005 to 2013 Brian was a Professor of Japanese Studies and director of the AEA “Japan and Its Buddhist Traditions Program” at Antioch University in Yellow Springs, OH, USA. From 2013 to 2015 he was a Visiting Research Fellow at the International Research Center for Japanese Studies in Kyoto, Japan. His latest book, Zen Terror: The Death of Democracy in Prewar Japan is forthcoming from Rowman & Littlefield in September 2019. Brian is currently a Senior Research Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Buddhist Studies and a fully ordained Buddhist priest in the Sōtō Zen sect.

Keynote Presentation (2021) | Zen Terror: Killing Compassionately?

Previous Presentations

Featured Presentation (2019) | Is Religious Tolerance Always Desirable: The Case of Shinto and Buddhism
Featured Presentation (2018) | Shinto: Window on Universal Religion
Featured Presentation (2017) | Military Conscription, Slavery and the Modern State
Featured Panel Presentation (2017) | Battles of Ideas: Identity and Alienation
Featured Presentation (2016) | Abstract for Religion and War – The Wartime Tribalization of Universal Religions
Featured Presentation (2016) | Holy War – Its Causes, Nature and, if possible, its Solutions
Spotlight Presentation (2015) | Powers of the Soul – A Very Different Theory of Justice

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