The Lankavatara Sutra

Discuss and learn about the traditional Mahayana scriptures, without assuming that any one school ‘owns’ the only correct interpretation.

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Nicholas Weeks
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Re: The Lankavatara Sutra

Postby Nicholas Weeks » Sat Apr 11, 2009 4:22 pm

thornbush - I am too lazy to click on every link. Is there any one of them that is not the translation of DT Suzuki?
A man should not judge a man, for he harms himself very quickly, that man who judges a man. Only I or someone like me can assess a man.

Buddha in the Surangamasamadhi Sutra

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Re: The Lankavatara Sutra

Postby thornbush » Sat Apr 11, 2009 4:58 pm

Only this one is DT Suzuki free but it's all in Sanskrit, I'm afraid: ... c9245b936a
This one is Suzuki/Goddard:
Looks like we still do not have another full English translation work done yet as an alternative to DT Suzuki's, either that or it's elusive somewhere...
If you do find it, we look forward to that version here....

Namo Amitabha Buddha!

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Re: The Lankavatara Sutra

Postby Astus » Wed Feb 24, 2010 9:12 pm

Here are two stanzas I've been messing around with. It'd be good if others could contribute here. Also, generally it would be good to discuss Suzuki's translation and how much it reflects different versions of the sutra.


In all things there is no self-nature, words too are devoid of reality; as the ignorant understand not what is meant by emptiness, yes, by emptiness, they wander about.
In all things there is no self-nature, they are mere words of people; that which is discriminated has no reality; [even] Nirvana is like a dream; nothing is seen to be in transmigration, nor does anything ever enter into Nirvana.

Lankavatara 2.34

sarvabhāvo'svabhāvo hi sadvacanaṁ tathāpyasat |
śūnyatāśūnyatārthaṁ vā bālo'paśyan vidhāvati || 143 ||
sarvabhāvasvabhāvā ca vacanamapi nṛṇām |
kalpanā sāpi nāsti nirvāṇaṁ svapnatulyam |
bhavaṁ parīkṣeta na saṁsāre nāpi nirvāyāt || 144 ||

(approximate trans. by a friend, English tr. by me)

Certainly every being is without essence, the true speech as well as the false
Not seeing the meaning of the emptiness of emptiness the fool's (mind) becomes confused
And every being's essence is only the words of men, there's not even discrimination
Nirvana is like a dream, doesn't investigate existence in samsara and doesn't get extinguished

(my unprofessional trans. of two different versions)


Appearances are without essence; words are without it too
Not seeing the meaning of emptiness; thus fools wander
No appearance has essence; leaving speech and discrimination
Everything is like a dream, an illusion; neither samsara, nor nirvana


Appearances are without essence; words are without it too
The very deep meaning of emptiness; fools cannot understand
Every being is essence; talking about law(s) is like a shadow
The self-awakening of the children of wisdom; is called the limit of reality
1 Myriad dharmas are only mind.
Mind is unobtainable.
What is there to seek?

2 If the Buddha-Nature is seen,
there will be no seeing of a nature in any thing.

3 Neither cultivation nor seated meditation —
this is the pure Chan of Tathagata.

4 With sudden enlightenment to Tathagata Chan,
the six paramitas and myriad means
are complete within that essence.

1 Huangbo, T2012Ap381c1 2 Nirvana Sutra, T374p521b3; tr. Yamamoto 3 Mazu, X1321p3b23; tr. J. Jia 4 Yongjia, T2014p395c14; tr. from "The Sword of Wisdom"

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