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The T'ien-t'ai patriarch Chih-i lived from 538 to 597 of the common era. He developed an interest in Buddhism early in life, and went on to become a Buddhist monk and teacher. His manual "The Great Stopping and Seeing" is one of the most important works of T'ien-t'ai Buddhism, and was frequently relied upon by followers of Zen and Pure Land Buddhism. Thomas Cleary holds a PhD in East Asian Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University and a JD from the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law. He is the translator of over fifty volumes of Buddhist, Taoist, Confucian, and Islamic texts from Sanskrit, Chinese, Japanese, Pali, and Arabic.