By Stephen C. Berkwitz, Juliane Schober, Claudia Brown

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

Collectively, the e-book deals 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 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 pictures play within the transmission of Buddhist texts and in fostering devotion between Buddhist groups.

Contributions are by way of reputed students in Buddhist stories and signify assorted disciplinary techniques from spiritual reports, paintings heritage, anthropology, and heritage. This booklet may 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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2; p. 214, fig. 3 [reproduced here as fig. a, showing the location of funerary urns, indicated by “U”. From Z. Tarzi and D. , Art et archéologie des monastères gréco-bouddhiquea du Nord-Ouest de l’Inde et de l Asie centrale, Paris: De Boccard, 2005; p. 214, fig. 3. (Courtesy Z. ) Why did the Gandh¯aran Buddhists bury their manuscripts? a area are true, they may well have originally been set in a similar position in some st¯upa-monastery complex. However, it is also possible that the pots containing manuscripts were interred within the main st¯upa court, in one of the small st¯upas which typically surround the central st¯upa in Gandh¯aran complexes.

Diverse Bajaur Agency, texts, genres, and scribal Pakistan. First or hands. second century ad Schøyen Bamiyan, Collection Afghanistan. Probably second to third or fourth centuries ad Scattered fragments of several folios of different manuscripts. Possibly discarded damaged leaves for which substitutes had been prepared and inserted into the original manuscript. Variable, ranging from “very well preserved” to “heavily damaged” (Strauch 2007: 9–11). ). h¯ı/G¯andh¯ar¯ı. Coherent been new when First half of anthology of s¯utra and interred, and may have second century ad s¯utra-like texts, all or nearly been written all in the same hand.

17 It might be argued against this theory that if the Buddhists of ancient Gandh¯ara buried their scriptures in order to preserve them for the distant future, they would have used a more durable material than birch bark. However, regardless of what the Gandh¯arans might have thought about the matter, it is a fact that many of these scrolls have in fact survived for some two thousand years, well past the then-predicted lifespan of the Dharma. Therefore, if the Buddhists of ancient Gandh¯ara had intended these deposits to serve as lasting records of the words of the Buddha, their wishes can now be said to have been fulfilled by their recent rediscovery.

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