Chips From A German Workshop, Vol. V.
by F. Max Mueller
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6
Home - Random Browse

138 Mahasravaka, the great disciples; sometimes the eighty principal disciples.

139 Arhadbhih. I have left the correct Sanskrit form, because the Japanese text gives the termination adbhih. Hogo's text has the more usual form arhantaih. The change of the old classical arhat into the Pali arahan, and then back into Sanskrit arhanta, arahanta, and at last arihanta, with the meaning of "destroyer of the enemies"—i. e. the passions—shows very clearly the different stages through which Sanskrit words passed in the different phases of Buddhist literature. In Tibet, in Mongolia, and in China, Arhat is translated by "destroyer of the enemy." See Burnouf, Lotus, p. 287; Introduction, p. 295. Arhat is the title of the Bhikshu on reaching the fourth degree of perfection. Cf. Sutra of the 42 Sections, cap. 2. Clemens of Alexandria (d. 220) speaks of the Σεμνοι who worshipped a pyramid erected over the relics of a god. Is this a translation of Arhat, as Lassen ("De nom. Ind. philosoph." in Rhein. Museum, vol. i. p. 187) and Burnouf (Introduction, p. 295) supposed, or a transliteration of Samana? Clemens also speaks of Σεμναί (Stromat. p. 539, Potter).

140 Indra, the old Vedic god, has come to mean simply lord, and in the Kanda Paritta (Journal Asiatique, 1871, p. 220) we actually find Asurinda, the Indra or Lord of the Asuras.

141 The numbers in Buddhist literature, if they once exceed a Koti or Koti—i. e. ten millions—become very vague, nor is their value always the same. Ayuta, i. e. a hundred Kotis; Niyuta, i. e. a hundred Ayutas; and Nayuta, i. e. 1 with 22 zeros, are often confounded; nor does it matter much so far as any definite idea is concerned which such numerals convey to our mind.

142 Tishthati dhriyate yapayati dharmam ka desayati. This is evidently an idiomatic phrase, for it occurs again and again in the Nepalese text of the Sukhavativyuha (MS. 26 b, l. 1. 2; 55 a, l. 2, etc.). It seems to mean, he stands there, holds himself, supports himself, and teaches the law. Burnouf translates the same phrase by, "ils se trouvent, vivent existent" (Lotus, p. 354). On yapeti in Pali, see Fausboell, Dasaratha-jataka, pp. 26, 28; and yapana in Sanskrit.

143 Kinkinigala. The texts read kankanigalais ka and kankanigalais ka, and again later kankanigalunam (also lu) and kankanigalanam. Mr. Beal translates from Chinese "seven rows of exquisite curtains," and again "gemmous curtains." First of all, it seems clear that we must read gala, net, web, instead of gala. Secondly, kankana, bracelet, gives no sense, for what could be the meaning of nets or string of bracelets? I prefer to read kinkinigala, nets or strings or rows of bells. Such rows of bells served for ornamenting a garden, and it may be said of them that, if moved by the wind, they give forth certain sounds. In the commentary on Dhammapada 30, p. 191, we meet with kinkinikagala, from which likewise the music proceeds; see Childers, s. v. gala. In the MSS. of the Nepalese Sukhavativyuha (R. A. S.), p. 39 a, l. 4, I likewise find svarnaratnakinkinigalani, which settles the matter, and shows how little confidence we can place in the Japanese texts.

144 Anuparikshipta, inclosed; see parikkhepo in Childers' Dict.

145 The eight good qualities of water are limpidity and purity, refreshing coolness, sweetness, softness, fertilizing qualities, calmness, power of preventing famine, productiveness. See Beal, Catena, p. 379.

146 Kakapeya. One text reads Kakapeya, the other Kakapeya. It is difficult to choose. The more usual word is kakapeya, which is explained by Panini, ii. 1, 33. It is uncertain, however, whether kakapeya is meant as a laudatory or as a depreciatory term. Boehtlingk takes it in the latter sense, and translates nadi kakapeya, by a shallow river that could be drunk up by a crow. Taranatha takes it in the former sense, and translates nadi kakapeya, as a river so full of water that a crow can drink it without bending its neck (kakair anatakandharaih piyate; purnodakatvena prasasye kakaih peye nadyadau). In our passage kakapeya must be a term of praise, and we therefore could only render it by "ponds so full of water that crows could drink from them." But why should so well known a word as kakapeya have been spelt kakapeya, unless it was done intentionally? And if intentionally, what was it intended for? We must remember that Panini, ii. 1, 42 schol., teaches us how to form the word tirthakaka, a crow at a tirtha, which means a person in a wrong place. It would seem, therefore, that crows were considered out of place at a tirtha or bathing-place, either because they were birds of ill omen, or because they defiled the water. From that point of view, kakapeya would mean a pond not visited by crows, free from crows. Professor Pischel has called my attention to Mahaparinibbana Sutta (J. R. A. S. 1875, p. 67, p. 21), where kakapeya clearly refers to a full river. Samatitthika, if this is the right reading, occurs in the same place as an epithet of a river, by the side of kakapeya, and I think it most likely that it means rising to a level with the tirthas, the fords or bathing-places. Mr. Rhys Davids informs me that the commentary explains the two words by samatittika ti samaharita, kakapeyya ti yatthatatthaki tire thitena kakena sakka patum ti.

147 Purobhaktena. The text is difficult to read, but it can hardly be doubtful that purobhaktena corresponds to Pali purebhattam (i. e. before the morning meal), opposed to pakkhabhattam, after the noonday meal (i. e. in the afternoon). See Childers, s. v. Purvabhaktika would be the first repast, as Professor Cowell informs me.

148 Diva viharaya, for the noonday rest, the siesta. See Childers, s. v. vihara.

149 Kraunkah. Snipe, curlew. Is it meant for Kuravika, or Karavika, a fine-voiced bird (according to Kern, the Sk. karayika), or for Kalavinka-Pali Kalavika? See Childers, s. v. opapatiko; Burnouf, Lotus, p. 566. I see, however, the same birds mentioned together elsewhere, as hamsakraunkamayurasukasalikakokila, etc. On mayura see Mahav. Introd. p. xxxix.; Rv. I. 191, 14.

150 Indriyabalabodhyangasabda. These are technical terms, but their meaning is not quite clear. Spence Hardy, in his Manual, p. 498, enumerates the five indrayas, viz. (1) sardhawa, purity (probably sraddha, faith), (2) wiraya, persevering exertion (virya), (3) sati or smirti, the ascertainment of truth (smriti), (4) samadhi, tranquillity, (5) pragnawa, wisdom (pragna).

The five balayas (bala), he adds, are the same as the five indrayas.

The seven bowdyanga (bodhyanga) are, according to him: (1) sihi or smirti, the ascertainment of the truth by mental application, (2) dharmmawicha, the investigation of causes. (3) wiraya, persevering exertion, (4) priti, joy, (5) passadhi, or prasrabdhi, tranquillity, (6) samadhi, tranquillity in a higher degree, including freedom from all that disturbs either body or mind, (7) upeksha, equanimity.

It will be seen from this that some of these qualities or excellences occur both as indriyas and bodhyangas, while balas are throughout identical with indriyas.

Burnouf, however, in his Lotus, gives a list of five balas (from the Vocabulaire Pentaglotte) which correspond with the five indriyas of Spence Hardy: viz. sraddha-bala, power of faith, virya-bala, power of vigor, smriti-bala, power of memory, samadhi-bala, power of meditation, pragna-bala, power of knowledge. They precede the seven bodhyangas both in the Lotus, the Vocabulaire Pentaglotte, and the Lalita-Vistara.

To these seven bodhyangas Burnouf has assigned a special treatise (Appendix xii. p. 796). They occur both in Sanskrit and Pali.

151 Niraya, the hells, also called Naraka. Yamaloka, the realm of Yama, the judge of the dead, is explained as the four Apayas—i. e. Naraka, hell, Tiryagyoni, birth as animals, Pretaloka, realm of the dead, Asuraloka, realm of evil spirits. The three terms which are here used together occur likewise in a passage translated by Burnouf, Introduction, p. 544.

152 Iti sankhyam gakkhanti, they are called; cf. Childers, s. v. sankhya. Asankhyeya, even more than aprameya, is the recognized term for infinity. Burnouf, Lotus, p. 852.

153 Avaramatraka. This is the Pali oramattako, "belonging merely to the present life," and the intention of the writer seems to be to inculcate the doctrine of the Mahayana, that salvation can be obtained by mere repetitions of the name of Amitabha, in direct opposition to the original doctrine of Buddha, that as a man soweth, so he reapeth. Buddha would have taught that the kusalamula, the root or the stock of good works performed in this world (avaramatraka), will bear fruit in the next, while here "vain repetitions" seems all that is enjoined. The Chinese translators take a different view of this passage, and I am not myself quite certain that I have understood it rightly. But from the end of this section, where we read kulaputrena va kuladuhitra va tatra buddhakshetre kittapranidhanam kartavyam, it seems clear that the locative (buddhakshetre) forms the object of the pranidhana, the fervent prayer or longing. The Satpurushas already in the Buddhakshetra would be the innumerable men (manushyas) and Boddhisattvas mentioned before.

154 Arthavasa, lit. the power of the thing; cf. Dhammapada, p. 388, v. 289.

155 I am not quite certain as to the meaning of this passage, but if we enter into the bold metaphor of the text, viz., that the Buddhas cover the Buddha-countries with the organ of their tongue and then unroll it, what is intended can hardly be anything but that they first try to find words for the excellences of those countries, and then reveal or proclaim them. Burnouf, however (Lotus, p. 417), takes the expression in a literal sense, though he is shocked by its grotesqueness. On these Buddhas and their countries, see Burnouf, Lotus, p. 113.

156 It should be remarked that the Tathagatas here assigned to the ten quarters differ entirely from those assigned to them in the Lalita-vistara, book xx. Not even Amitabha is mentioned there.

157 Pratiyatha. The texts give again and again pattiyatha, evidently the Pali form, instead of pratiyata. I have left tha, the Pali termination of the 2 p. pl. in the imperative, instead of ta, because that form was clearly intended, while pa for pra may be an accident. Yet I have little doubt that patiyatha was in the original text. That it is meant for the imperative, we see from sraddadhadhvam, etc., farther on. Other traces of the influence of Pali or Prakrit on the Sanskrit of our Sutra appear in arhantaih, the various reading for arhadbhih, which I preferred; sambahula for bahula; dhriyate yapayati; purobhaktena; anyatra; sankhyam gakkhanti; avaramatraka; vethana instead of veshtana, in nirvethana; dharmaparyaya (Corp. Inscript. plate XV.), etc.

158 The Sukhavativyuha, even in its shortest text, is called a Mahayana-sutra, nor is there any reason why a Mahayana-sutra should not be short. The meaning of Mahayana-sutra is simply a Sutra belonging to the Mahayana school, the school of the Great Boat. It was Burnouf who, in his Introduction to the History of Buddhism, tried very hard to establish a distinction between the Vaipulya or developed Sutras, and what he calls the simple Sutras. Now, the Vaipulya Sutras may all belong to the Mahayana school, but that would not prove that all the Sutras of the Mahayana school are Vaipulya or developed Sutras. The name of simple Sutra, in opposition to the Vaipulya or developed Sutras, is not recognized by the Buddhists themselves; it is really an invention of Burnouf's. No doubt there is a great difference between a Vaipulya Sutra, such as the Lotus of the Good Law, translated by Burnouf, and the Sutras which Burnouf translated from the Divyavadana. But what Burnouf considers as the distinguishing mark of a Vaipulya Sutra, viz. the occurrence of Bodhisattvas, as followers of the Buddha Sakyamuni, would no longer seem to be tenable ("Les presence des Bodhisattuvas ou leur absence interesse done le fonds meme des livres ou on la remarque, et il est bien evident que ce seul point trace une ligno de demarcation profonde entre les Sutras ordinaires et les Sutras developpes." Burnouf. Introduction, p. 112.), unless we classed our short Sukhavati-vyuha as a Vaipulya or developed Sutra. For this there is no authority. Our Sutra is called a Mahayana Sutra, never a Vaipulya Sutra, and yet among the followers of Buddha, the Bodhisattvas constitute a very considerable portion. But more than that, Amitabha, the Buddha of Sukhavati, another personage whom Burnouf looks upon as peculiar to the Vaipulya Sutras, who is, in fact, one of the Dhyani-buddhas, though not called by that name in our Sutra, forms the chief object of its teaching, and is represented as coeval with Buddha Sakyamuni. ("L'idee d'un ou de plusieurs Buddhas surhumains, celle de Bodhisattvas crees par eux, sont des conceptions aussi etrangeres a ces livres (les Sutras simples) que celle d'un Adibuddha ou d'un Dieu."—Burnouf, Introduction, p. 120.) The larger text of the Sukhavativyuha would certainly, according to Burnouf's definition, seem to fall into the category of the Vaipulya Sutras. But it is not so called in the MSS. which I have seen, and Burnouf himself gives an analysis of that Sutra (Introduction, p. 99) as a specimen of a Mahayana, but not of a Vaipulya Sutra.

159 See H. Yule, Marco Polo, 2d ed. vol. i. pp. 441-443.

160 In China, as Dr. Edkins states, the doctrine of Amitabha is represented by the so-called Lotus school (Lian-tsung) or Pure Land (Tsing-tu). The founder of this school in China was Hwei-yuan of the Tsin dynasty (fourth century). The second patriarch (tsu) of this school was Kwang-ming (seventh century).

161 See page 191.


Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6
Home - Random Browse