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  • Tên sách : Popular Buddhism In China
  • Tác giả : Shao Chang Lee
  • Dịch giả :
  • Ngôn ngữ : Anh
  • Số trang : 52
  • Năm xuất bản : 1938
  • Phân loại : Sách tiếng Anh-English
  • MCB : 12100000002620
  • OPAC :
  • Tóm tắt :

Popular Buddhism In China

With Translations of Ten Buddhist Poems, Thirty-two Buddhist Proverbs, Hsüan Ts'ang’s “Essence of the Wisdom Sutra,“ and Kumarajiva's “Diamond Sutra“

By Shao Chang Lee

Professor of Chinese History and Language,

University of Hawaii

Introduction By Dr. Johannes Rahder


            FOREWORD I

The Diamond Sutra (Vajracchedika Prajna Paramita, or simply Maha Prajna Paramita Sutra) for the attainment of the Highest Per­fect Wisdom (Anuttara Samyak Sambodhi) is one of the numerous Discourses delivered by the Lord Sakyamuni Buddha during his 45 years of administration to the people of his time, and is found in one of the three Great Divisions of the Tripitaka (The Three Baskets of Buddhist Scriptures consisting of the Sutra Pitaka, Vinaya Pi taka, and Abhidharma Pitaka).

This Sutra (in Chinese: Kim Kong Keng) has been translated into Chinese from Sanskrit after die Great Demise of the Buddha. It reflects the result of the Lord's long and arduous experience in his quest for enlightenment. Prajna (wisdom) is the basis of this discourse. It is said to be akin to combustion—the more the fire is fed with fuel, the higher and more lively will the flames burn; but smoulders silently when it is left untouched. It is on this principle that the different systems of Sagehood are based.

In the Diamond Sutra is found the three steps of spiritual cuki- varion. They are the observation of Moral Precepts (Sila), concentration of the mind and meditation (Samadhi), and the cultivation of wisdom (Panna). The practice of the Moral Precepts pave the way to concen­tration and meditation, and these in turn produce wisdom. The 6 Paramitas (Virtues), or die Six Means of Crossing the Sea of Sangsara (Transmigration) are die paths all Buddhists must tread. And as is said in the Saddharma Pundarika Sutra: "wisdom is not easy for one to enter…”

The Lord Buddha first preached this Sutra to a disciple, Subhuti and 1250 Bhikshus in the Jetavana Grove (given to die Brotherhood by Anatha-pindika) in the Kingdom of Shravasti.

There are altogether 6 TRANSLATIONS of this Sutra, of which this one is considered to be the best. During the 11th Century B. E.(Buddhist Era), the great Indian missionary, Bodhidharma* brought the Doctrine of Meditation (Sanskrit: Dhyana; and Chinese: Chan) to China. This Diamond Sutra was the focus of sustained contemplation, and for more than 1,000 years was used as the object of study and researches. Commentaries and critical analysis have been written by more than 700 Buddhist philosophers and writers, which more than prove the importance of this Sutra.

I first read it at the age of 12, at Chuan-Chew Monastery. When I came to the 14 th Chapter in which the Lord Buddha said to Subhud: “ once in a previous life, the King of Kalinga mutilated my body. It was the time when all parts of my body were being cut and sliced," I could not go on reading it, but with a shudder closed the book. The  foll0wing year I had my head shaved and became a Buddhist monk at Guat Tai. I adored this Sutra and read it extensively.

When IchanteduptoSection16,in which is said:" ** good men and good women who receive and retain this Discourse: the evil-doer's destiny is the inevitable result from sins committed in his past mortal lives. The present misfortunes are the reactions of his bad past. As soon as he has balanced up his evil deeds with virtuous ones, he will be in a position to seek salvation and attain the incom­parable enlightenment"; I perspired  pr0fusely despite the fact that it was a wintry night.

At the outbreak of the War of Resistance in China, the Rev. Hong It and I lived together at Seng Thean Monastery. Chief Justice Phiak Kuay asked me to invite a preacher to preach the Diamond Sutra. I agreed, and Rev. Hong It was invited to do die preaching. When the following passage was read, its full significance dawned upon me. It runs thus: “Subhud, if one Bodhisattva-Mahasattva bestows in charity sufficient of the Seven Treasures to fill as many world as there be sand-grains in the river Ganges, and another, realising that all things are egoless, attains perfecdon through padent forbearence, the merit of the latter will far exceed that of the former."

I wish to emphasise that Lord Buddha went through numerable kalpas (aeons) leading a Bodhisattva’s life; relinquishing what man cannot relinquish; doing what man cannot do; and forbearing what man cannot forbear. How great and noble is He!

During the 2, 500 Anniversary of the Jay anti of the Lord Buddha I pray that His teachings may spread far and wide throughout the whole world.

With the unfaltering determination and help of the Buddhist scholars, Mr. it Mrs. Lim Peng Chcow; Mr. & Mrs. Koo Son Jin, and with the initiative taken by Mr. Ho Soo Hoo it is now possible again to reprint the Chincse-English translation of this Sutra. Out of the 3,000 copies of this edition, some 2,500 will be sent to India for free distribution during Lord Buddha’s celebration.

This Sutra is published in the hope that all those who read it will derive immense benefit from the teachings embodied in it


19th March, 2499 B. E.

Rev. Kong Ghee,

Beow Hiang Lim Temple, Penang Hill Road,


Monastery and Mrs. J. Scott Crocker for the picture showing the Chinese conception of the historical Buddha which she obtained for him in Berlin. The other two illustrations are from the author’s collection.

To Dr. Ch’en Shou-yi, thanks are due for reading over the manuscript and giving valuable suggestions and help. Thanks are also due Dr. David L. Crawford, President of the University of Hawaii, Professor Gregg M. Sinclair, Director of the Oriental Institute, and Mr. Wang Yiin-wu, Managing Director and Editor in Chief of the Commercial Press, for their interest and encouragement. The author is indebted to his other esteemed colleagues and the students for their never-failing interest in his work. Lastly, he is deeply indebted to Dr. ]ohannes Rahdcr, visiting professor at the University of Hawaii from Leiden, 1937-1938. for criticism and for an introduction which he has so kindlv written.

Author:Shao Chang Lee

Oriental Institute University Op Hawaii Honolulu, T. H.

November, 1938.




Mr. Shao Chang Lee is to be congratulated on the successful completion of the arduous task of making Chinese Buddhism intelligible to the English-speaking world.

Though many great Chinese scholars have translated the Confucianist and other classical Chinese philosophical systems to the West, the field of Buddhist studies and the interpreta­tion of Buddhist philosophy in terms intelligible to Western intellectuals has been sadly neglected by Chinese leaders of thought.

In MR. Shao Chang Lee’s excellent translation of The Diamond Sutra, The Wisdom Sutra,and the ten Buddhist poems are equally evident his philosophical acumen, his keen philosophical insight, his firm grasp of elusive thought patterns and his delicate sense of literary beauty.

It is to be hoped that a great many Western readers may enlarge their intellectual horizon and enrich their spiritual experience by perusing and enjoying this precious book.

Johannes Rahder

Honolulu, T. H.

June 28, 1938.



Foreword I 

Foreword II

Introduction, by Dr. Johannes Rahder, Professor of Japanology, Leiden University Holland; Visiting Professor of Oriental Langnages, University of Hawaii, 1937-1938    

Buddhism in China

Buddhist Proverbs                        

Essence of the Wisdom Sutra

The Diamond Sutra



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