a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

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rockmonolith
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a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by rockmonolith » Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:30 pm

Hi, I am a beginner Buddhist. I have got a quick question on one sentence, well actually six sentences, regarding the Diamond Sutra. The Buddha refers to "a four-line verse" or "the four line" verse for six times, but that verse did not appear in the text. What is the earliest possible Sanskrit original for this phrase? A pic of the sanskrit original of "the/a four line verse" would be appreciated.

Rock.

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Aryjna
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by Aryjna » Fri Jan 12, 2018 2:11 pm

If I understand your question correctly, this is a reference to any verse of the Diamond Sutra, so of course they appear in the text, this is what the text is made of in the first place.

rockmonolith
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by rockmonolith » Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:13 am

Thank you so much for your reply. From what I read, a gatha, or a stanza, like a poem, has a particular format. For example, it should have certain numbers of syllable, certain number of lines, rhythm, and so on. But throughout of the Diamond Sutra, I see only one clearly stated stanza, which appears almost at the end of the sutra. Here is the clearly stated stanza:

“Whoever saw me through my physical form,
Whoever followed me through the sound of my voice,
Engaged in the wrong endeavours,
Those people will not see me.


Some say the last several lines, "A shooting star, a clouding of the sight, a lamp, An illusion, a drop of dew, a bubble, A dream, a lightning’s flash, a thunder cloud—This is the way one should see the conditioned." is a verse.

Why does the Buddha first talk about "the four-line verse" for a number of times, as if everyone knows it, and then speaks of the stanza only in the end, or almost at the end? The organization of the text does not appear logical to me.

Here is what I found:https://www2.hf.uio.no/polyglotta/index ... ext&vid=22

I have never learned Sanskrit. Could somebody please point out which characters in the embedded palm leaf sutras corresponds to the word "four" "line" "verse", respectively?

Again, thank so much for your kind response.

Best

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Aryjna
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by Aryjna » Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:59 am

I took a quick look now to check if I could be wrong in my previous comment. Apparently it is not certain that the reference is just to any four lines of the text. So it could perhaps be a reference specifically to a four-line stanza in meter. Then again it could also be any four lines of the Diamond Sutra.

muni
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by muni » Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:10 am

Whoever saw me through my physical form,
Whoever followed me through the sound of my voice
,
Engaged in the wrong endeavours,
Those people will not see me.
What "beginner", Diamond sutra?
Anyway this is so important is there said. Even appearance is there temporary to help, tool, the focus is not on the appearance/form/personality what we are used to. Buddhism is not about independent learned selves, separate from independent ourselves.
That is why there is the need of Compassionate Enlightened guidance, not to cling/focus to form and start to analyse only what is been said.
Related to that: http://www.rigpawiki.org/index.php?title=Four_reliances

I hope you can be helped with your problem here and thank you for sharing these lines.
“ Only the development of compassion and understanding for others can bring us the tranquility and happiness we all seek. ”
H H Dalai Lama

"Relax." nirvana-samsara do not stray from spaciousness.

rockmonolith
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by rockmonolith » Thu Jan 18, 2018 5:48 am

Thank you so much for your response. I appreciate it. The link you provided is very helpful.

With this being said, I still want to learn more about the translation of the "four-line verse" in different texts. What does Tibetan text say? Does it say "speak even a four-line verse from this sutra?"

Thanks
Rock

Punya
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by Punya » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:27 pm

rockmonolith wrote:
Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:13 am


Why does the Buddha first talk about "the four-line verse" for a number of times, as if everyone knows it, and then speaks of the stanza only in the end, or almost at the end? The organization of the text does not appear logical to me.
The meaning of the "four verses" references is explained pretty clearly in these extracts:
Subhuti, what do you think? If there were as many Ganges Rivers as the grains of sand in the Ganges, wouldn’t the number of sands contained in all those Ganges Rivers be great?” Subhuti said, “Extremely great, World Honored One. Even the number of the Ganges Rivers are innumerable, how much more so their grains of sand?” “Subhuti, now I tell you truthfully: If a good man or good woman filled as many trichiliocosms as the grains of sands in all those Ganges Rivers with the seven jewels, and gave them away in charity, would this merit not be great?” “Extremely great, World Honored One.” The Buddha said to Subhuti: “If a good man or good woman is able to comprehend and follow a four-line verse from this sutra and teach it to others, their merit will be far greater.
Furthermore, Subhuti, wherever one teaches or recites so much as a four-line verse of this sutra, that place should be venerated as a Buddha-shrine by heavenly beings, human beings, and asuras in this world. How much more so is the case where one can completely remember, comprehend, and follow this sutra! Subhuti, you should know that such a person has achieved the highest, rarest of accomplishments. Wherever this sutra is present, it is as if the Buddha or the Buddha’s revered disciples were also present.
What it is saying is that there is great merit in reciting any of the four line verses from this sutra. Regardless of what translation you uncover, you can expect the meaning to be the same.
We abide nowhere. We possess nothing.
~Chatral Rinpoche

Punya
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by Punya » Thu Jan 18, 2018 9:30 pm

Unexpected duplication
We abide nowhere. We possess nothing.
~Chatral Rinpoche

rockmonolith
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by rockmonolith » Fri Jan 19, 2018 1:40 am

Well, if you look at the two Chinese translations respectively by Bodhiruci and Paramartha in the 5th century, the so-called four-line stanza actually has eight lines. And the last several lines, which later was turned into a stanza, were not a verse at all in the earlier translations.

Punya
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Re: a question regarding the Diamond Sutra

Post by Punya » Fri Jan 19, 2018 4:24 am

The four reliances seem relevant to this discussion:

http://www.rigpawiki.org/index.php?title=Four_reliances

It's also helpful to consider that it can take time to understand the meaning. I can remember comparing line by line the translation of two lojong texts as a beginner, but really that's not the point. Unless maybe you are an academic.
We abide nowhere. We possess nothing.
~Chatral Rinpoche

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