Sacred Writings

Download Buddhist Manuscript Cultures: Knowledge, Ritual, and Art by Stephen C. Berkwitz, Juliane Schober, Claudia Brown PDF

By Stephen C. Berkwitz, Juliane Schober, Claudia Brown

Buddhist Manuscript Cultures explores how spiritual and cultural practices in premodern Asia have been formed by way of literary and inventive traditions in addition to through Buddhist fabric tradition. This examine of Buddhist texts makes a speciality of the importance in their fabric kinds instead of their doctrinal contents, and examines how and why they have been made.

Collectively, the booklet bargains cross-cultural and comparative insights into the transmission of Buddhist wisdom and using texts and pictures as ritual items within the inventive and aesthetic traditions of Buddhist cultures. Drawing on case experiences 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 by means of reputed students in Buddhist stories and signify assorted disciplinary ways from spiritual reviews, paintings background, anthropology, and heritage. This e-book can be of curiosity to students and scholars operating in those fields.

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Extra resources for Buddhist Manuscript Cultures: Knowledge, Ritual, and Art

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6 For detailed discussions of this inscription and its significance, see Salomon 1999: 151–2 and 214–7. 7 The absence of the donor’s name from the inscription in question is unusual but not unique (Salomon 1999: 214, 241). 8 For quotations, references, and evaluation of these findings and other related data, see Salomon 1999: 77–81. 9 Charles Masson’s description of “[l]arge numbers of funereal jars … in a mound behind the village of Hidda, near Tappa Kelán …. deposited sometimes in regular succession … resting on a common line of cement” (in Wilson 1841: 112–3; cited in Salomon 1999: 78) seems to refer to a similar situation, but Tarzi’s recent discussion provides us for the first time with a clear picture of the archaeological situation of such funereal vessels.

H¯ı materials fragments of one or several individual folios from the same manuscript, but never anything approaching a complete text or even a complete folio. This situation may simply reflect “the luck of the draw,” with the surviving fragments representing a chance remnant of the complete manuscripts which through some quirk of fate has happened to survive. However, there is also 28 Richard Salomon another possible explanation: the sporadic character of the surviving fragments could constitute the remainder, not of deposits of complete manuscripts or even of substantial portions thereof, but rather of separately discarded damaged folios for which replacements had been substituted in the original texts, and which were then ritually deposited or interred.

He notes, for example (p. , p. 110) of the manuscripts. Both of these points are, in my opinion, still open to question. The interpretation of the interlinear scribal notation cannot be conclusively determined on the basis of Why did the Gandh¯aran Buddhists bury their manuscripts? 25 the surviving data. Lenz is no doubt right that much, even most of the deterioration of the British Library scrolls took place after their interment in antiquity, but there is nevertheless positive evidence that at least some of them were damaged and incomplete before the interment, as shown, for example by the compound scroll (British Library fragment 5) which consisted of the remnants of at least three originally separate scrolls (Salomon 2000: 20–7).

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