Fri Feb 7 19:47:25 UTC 2003

Jonathan Silk wrote:

> There are two Garbhavakrantis in the collection [snip] (The Tibetan
versions are
> renderings from Chinese).
There are, as you know, two in the Chinese RK and two in the Tibetan RK but
though the colophon to one of the Tibetan versions indicates that it was
translated by Chos-grub from the Chinese, the other version gives no such
indication -- so is your suggestion based on a comparison with the other
Chinese version or just an assumption ?
Apart from the MS Vinaya connections, has anybody commented on the list of
"worms" listed in these texts ?  The list has a great resemblance to that
given in the Vimutti-magga, suggesting perhaps some influence from there.
Yijing who translated one of the versions in the Chinese RK seems to have
acquired some of his mss in Sri Lanka so could the Garbhavakranti have some
S Indian origin or connection ?

> I might also remark here that I believe that this text is very
> important in one most interesting respect: it counts pregnancy in
> weeks.
Note that the Vimutti-magga also counts the development of the embryo in

Years ago I did some work on the anatomical descriptions found in these and
other works and I think there is clear evidence that they are presenting a
distinct tradition that is unconnected with the Susruta / Caraka lineages --
e.g. the way of enumerating the bones is different -- so your suggestion of
a Hellenistic influence looks plausible.

Best wishes,
Stephen Hodge

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