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Group Description

This group has been formed to promote the study of the Chinese Āgama. The Chinese Āgama could be seen as the Chinese versions of the Pāli Nikāyas, which are part of the Pāli Canon, generally considered to be the earliest and most complete extant records of the Buddha's teaching. The Chinese Āgama were translated from Indian around 400 CE, but became dead texts [were "fossilised"] due to the predominance of the Mahāyāna School of Buddhism in China.

I hope that comparative studies with the Pāli will be part of the work done in this group. I believe such comparisons would prove very useful in seeing the development of Theravādin [and other Buddhist] doctrine, which would include a particular interpretation of the Buddha's teaching, as with any school of Buddhism. Of course, members of each school would not like to admit they are working on an interpretation, but rather would want to hold that they understand and teach the Buddha's teaching purely. In that case we can keep this saying in mind: "The Truth does not suffer from investigation."

I suggest uploading Chinese text as a PDF, using the Pin1yin1 (Pīnyīn) Chinese-to-Roman transcription system [from Mainland China]. For those who have not set up their system to type diacritics easily you can use numbers for Chinese tones and the transcription method in the files section for Roman Pāli text.

I hope more experienced scholars will join and let us know of useful resources online or in print and help correct any mistakes we make, which we should do for each other too, with an attitude on both sides of possibly being mistaken.

Peace and good health to you and those close to you
Brother Joe
[Norman Joseph Smith]
[Bhikkhu Dhamma-dāsa 比丘法使]

PS I had to put Zen as the group category, the only choices were it, Tibetan and By Location.

Group Information

  • 22
  • Zen
  • Mar 6, 2005
  • English

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