Buddhist Manuscript Cultures: Knowledge, Ritual and Art by Stephe Berkwitz

By Stephe Berkwitz

Buddhist Manuscript Cultures explores how spiritual and cultural practices in premodern Asia have been formed by way of literary and creative traditions in addition to through Buddhist fabric tradition. This research of Buddhist texts makes a speciality of the importance in their fabric types instead of their doctrinal contents, and examines how and why they have been made. jointly, the publication bargains cross-cultural and comparative insights into the transmission of Buddhist wisdom and using texts and photographs as ritual gadgets within the creative and aesthetic traditions of Buddhist cultures. Drawing on case reviews from India, Gandhara, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Mongolia, China and Nepal, the chapters incorporated examine the variety of pursuits and values linked to generating and utilizing written texts, and the jobs manuscripts and photographs play within the transmission of Buddhist texts and in fostering devotion between Buddhist groups. Contributions are through reputed students in Buddhist stories and signify diversified disciplinary techniques from spiritual reviews, paintings background, anthropology, and heritage. This booklet may be of curiosity to students and scholars operating in those fields.

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In such cases, we may be dealing with funereal vessels containing the bodily remains of deceased monks who were interred together with their personal manuscripts, a practice which is well attested in later Tibetan tradition. Why did the Gandh¯aran Buddhists bury their manuscripts? 31 Fourth and finally, another possible motivation underlying the interment of Gandh¯aran manuscripts is what might be called “dharma insurance,” that is, a desire to ensure that the dharma, in the form of buddhavacana, would survive into the far future.

A)mi [prati]tha[vi]? asa masumatraputrasa “In the year twelve, in the month Avadunaka, after (*five) days; at this time [this] was established in honor of [his] mother and father [and] in honor of all beings. , which can be confidently restored as pratithavi(*da) (“established”) or the like, this being the verb which is almost invariably used to record the foundation of relic deposits. This suggests that the inscription specifically records the dedication of its contents, namely the manuscripts, although it does not mention them explicitly; this, in contrast to the British Library inscription that merely commemorates the gift to the monastery of the pot on which it is written.

258) and illustration (p. 284, fig. 15 [reproduced here as fig. 4]), this relic deposit consisted of a fragment of bone placed within a gold box, which was placed in a larger silver box, which in turn was inside a bronze box. a period, and the jar was then set inside a cubic container of limestone which was covered by two slabs of schist, one above the other. a. From Z. Tarzi and D. , Art et archéologie des monastères gréco-bouddhique du Nord-Ouest de l’Inde et de l” Asie centrale, Paris: De Boccard, 2005; p.

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