Chih Sheng (688-740 AD)

N. Ganesan naga_ganesan at HOTMAIL.COM
Tue Feb 23 20:13:17 UTC 1999

> Zhisheng states at the beginning of this biography that Vajrabodhi
>"comes from the country of Malaya, in the South India".  Then in a
> note, he writes:  "The name of this country is
>translated here [= in Chinese] 'guangming' [Shining light].  Near
>to this country, there is the Palace of Avalokite"svara [in ?] the
> Mountain Potalaka".  The same thing is repeated by a later compiler
> of Canon Catalog, Yuanzhao, T. LV 2157 xiv 875a13-14.

  Dear Dr. Nobumi Iyanaga,

  Greetings from N. Ganesan

  Is the name of the Malaya country translated as Kuang ming
(Shining light)?

Lokesh Chandra, Origin of the Avalokitezvara of Potala,
Kailash journal, p. 6,
"Hsuan-tsang must have read in the Avatamsaka sutra about the
earthly paradise of Avalokitezvara: Potalaka is on the sea-side
in the South. it has woods, and streams and tanks, and is in fact
a sort of earthly paradise. Budhhabhadra (AD 420) calls Kuanyin's
mountain Kuang-ming or 'Brilliance', which is usually given as
the rendering for Malaya, but a later translator, zikshAnanda,
transcribes the name Potalaka (Watters 1905:2.231)".

Alexander C. Soper, Literary evidence for early Buddhist art in China,
p. 163,
"The six dynasties translation of the GaNDavyUha sUtra, done by
Buddhabhadra between 418 and 420 or  421, introduces the two thus:

 Going continually on and on, he made his way to Mount Radiant, which
 he ascended. On it he looked everywhere for the Bodhisattva
 Avalokitezvara ..

Here the Bodhisattva is called "Kuan-shih-yin" and the mountain is
"Kuang-ming Shan". In the T'ang translation of the same work, done
between 695-699, both names are modernized, the first to
"Kuan-tzu-tsai" and the second to "pu-ta-lo-chia" (i.e.,) Potalaka".

L. Chandra is saying that Malaya is Kuang-ming
originally. But, A. C. Soper is saying the Mountain is
Kuang-ming originally. Which is correct?

 You have said that Zhisheng calls Malaya country as Guang-ming.
Is the Malaya country called Guang-ming or the Potalaka
called Guang-ming??? In Zhisheng and in Buddhabhadra??

 Thanks a lot for this help.

>I often see this book in old book shops in Tokyo, but I don't
> have it.  Does Mr. Ganesan read Japanese?  If not, how did he
>know what is written in this book...??

 I asked a friend knowing Japanese to read & tell me.

 With kind regards,
 N. Ganesan

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