A Buddhist Bible: The Favorite Scriptures of the Zen Sect

A Buddhist Bible: The Favorite Scriptures of the Zen Sect

A Buddhist Bible: The Favorite Scriptures of the Zen Sect

A Buddhist Bible: The Favorite Scriptures of the Zen Sect

Excerpt

As an extended introduction to the study of LANKAVATARA SUTRA has been given by Prof. Suzuki in both his STUDIES and TRANSLATION, only a very brief statement is necessary here.

Nothing is known as to its author, the time of its composition, or as to its original form. There is a myth that it originally consisted of 100,000 verses, and the second chapter of the present text has a footnote which reads: "Here ends the second chapter of the Collection of all the Dharmas, taken from the Lankavatara of 36,000 verses." Apparently it was originally a collection of verses covering all the main teachings of Mahayana Buddhism. This vast collection of verses became a source from which the Masters selected texts for their discourses. As the verses were very epigrammatic, obscure and disconnected, in the course of time the discourses were remembered and the verses largely forgotten, until in the present text there are remaining only 884 verses. The present text has every appearance of being something in the way of a disciple's notebook in which he had written down extracts or outlines of his master's discourses on some of these verses.

It is generally felt that the present text must have been compiled early in the First Century, probably a . . .

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