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Relevance to Buddha-nature
Though not necessarily classified as a tathāgatagarbha sūtra, several themes related to buddha-nature are addressed in this text, such as the single vehicle, the potential for all beings to achieve enlightnement, and the permanence of buddhahood.
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Translations of This Text
- Reeves, Gene, trans. The Lotus Sutra: A Contemporary Translation of a Buddhist Classic. Boston: Wisdom Publications, 2008.
- Kubo, Tsugunari, and Akira Yuyama, trans. The Lotus Sutra (Taishō Volume 9, Number 262). Rev. 2nd ed. Translated from the Chinese of Kumārajiva. Moraga, CA: BDK America, 2016.
- The White Lotus of the Good Dharma: Saddharmapuṇḍarīka (Roberts, P.)
- Watson, Burton, trans. The Lotus Sutra. Translations from the Asian Classics. New York: Columbia University Press, 1993. https://ia802902.us.archive.org/13/items/lotussutraburtonwatson_202003_473_o/Lotus%20Sutra%20Burton%20Watson.pdf.
- Soothill, William Edward, trans. The Lotus of the Wonderful Law or The Lotus Gospel: Saddharma Pundarīka Sūtra Miao-Fa Lien Hua Ching. 2nd ed. London: Routledge, 2005.
- Kern, H., trans. Saddharmapuṇḍarīka or the Lotus of the True Law. Sacred Books of the East 21. New York: Dover Publications, 1963.
- Hurvitz, Leon, trans. Scripture of the Lotus Blossom of the Fine Dharma. New York: Columbia University Press, 1976.
- Kāto, Bunnō, Yoshirō Tamura, and Kōjirō Miyasaka, trans. The Threefold Lotus Sutra: Innumberable Meanings, The Lotus Flower of the Wonderful Law, and Mediation on the Bodhisattva Universal Virtue. Tokyo: Kosei Publishing, 1995. https://archive.org/details/threefoldlotussu0000unse_d9v6.
- Hua, Hsuan. The Essentials of the Dharma Blossom Sutra. Vol. 1. Translated by Bhikshu Heng Ch'ien. San Francisco: Buddhist Text Translation Society, 1974.
- Murano, Senchu, trans. The Lotus Sutra: The Sutra of the Lotus Flower of the Wonderful Dharma. 3rd ed. Translated from Kumārajīva's version of The Saddharmapuṇḍarīka-Sūtra. Revised by Shinkyo Warner. Hayward, CA: Nichiren Buddhist International Center, 2012.
- Katō, Bunnō, trans. Myōhō-Renge-Kyō: The Sutra of the Lotus Flower of the Wonderful Law. Revised by W. E. Soothill and W. Schiffler. Tokyo: Kōsei Publishing, 1971.
Recensions of This Text
- There are several Sanskrit editions (the most recent one by Toda in 2002) and many fragments of this sūtra as well as a Tibetan (D113; 180 folios) and several Chinese translations (Taishō 262–65). There is an old English translation from the Sanskrit by H. Kern (Oxford 1884) and several from the different Chinese versions (for details, see Potter 1995 under Saddharmapuṇḍarīkasūtra).
Philosophical positions of this text
|Other Titles||~ saddharmapuṇḍarīka-nāma-mahāyāna-sūtra|
|Text exists in||~ Sanskrit|
|Canonical Genre||~ Kangyur · Sūtra · mdo sde · Sūtranta|
|Literary Genre||~ Sūtras - mdo|
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About the text
The White Lotus of the Good Dharma, popularly known as the Lotus Sūtra, is taught by Buddha Śākyamuni on Vulture Peak to an audience that includes bodhisattvas from countless realms, as well as bodhisattvas who emerge out from the ground from the space below this world. Buddha Prabhūtaratna, who has long since passed into nirvāṇa, appears within a floating stūpa to hear the sūtra, and Śākyamuni enters the stūpa and sits beside him. The Lotus Sūtra is celebrated, particularly in East Asia, for its presentation of crucial elements of the Mahāyāna tradition, such as the doctrine that there is only one yāna, or “vehicle”; the distinction between expedient and definite teachings; and the notion that the Buddha’s life, enlightenment, and parinirvāṇa were simply manifestations of his transcendent buddhahood, while he continues to teach eternally. A recurring theme in the sūtra is its own significance in teaching these points during past and future eons, with many passages in which the Buddha and bodhisattvas such as Samantabhadra describe the great benefits that come from devotion to it, the history of its past devotees, and how it is the Buddha’s ultimate teaching, supreme over all other sūtras. (Source: 84000)