After a long illness, the prolific Buddhist scholar John R. McRae passed away this week at age 64. In an announcement about his death for H-Buddhism (the Buddhist Scholars Information Network), A. Charles Muller wrote:
“It is with heavy heart that I pass on to you the sad news [of John McRae’s] passing away in Bangkok Hospital at 12:30 pm on October 22, 2011, at the age of 64, after a 16-month bout with pancreatic cancer.”
McRae was the author of the books Seeing through Zen: Encounter, Transformation, and Genealogy in Chinese Chan Buddhism and The Northern School and the Formation of Early Ch’an Buddhism, as well as many important articles. In addition, he wrote one of the few English translations of the Vimalakirti Nirdesa Sutra for the Numata Center for Buddhist Translation and Research.
McRae, who had previously taught at Cornell University and Indiana University, was serving as a lecturer at Komazawa University in Tokyo at the time of his death. We at Lion’s Roar Foundation extend our sincere condolences to his wife, Buddhologist Jan Nattier, and their family.