the most influential of a number of Tendai scholars active during the tenth and eleventh centuries in Japan.
He was not a wandering evangelist as Kūya was, but was an elite cleric who espoused a doctrine of devotion to Amida Buddha which taught that because Japan was thought to have entered mappō, the "degenerate age" of the "latter law," the only hope for salvation lay in the reliance on the power of Amitabha. Other doctrines, he claimed, could not aid an individual because they depended on "self-power" , which cannot prevail during the chaos of the degenerate age, when the power of another is necessary. In his approach to rebirth in the Pure Land, Genshin emphasized visual meditation practices, where later Pure Land sects favored verbal recitations such as the nembutsu. Genshin's doctrine is documented in his magnum opus, the Ōjōyōshū , which in later copies of the text came complete with graphic depictions of the joy of the blessed and the suffering of those doomed to chaos