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Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

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Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby Anders on Thu Feb 11, 2016 12:29 am

Hi all,

I am looking at memorising the diamond sutra and for that would need to settle on a translation. I figured I would start by taking recommendations from the good people of ZFI.

Any reason for recommending one is of interest. Whether it is due to academic rigour, poetic depth, meaningfulness, simple heart connection to a certain translation or the best composite of a number of these factors. Multiple choices of different translations fire different reasons are also welcome.

I would very much appreciate if you could share a few words on why you recommend a given translation though.

Thanks in advance for your support. :Namaste:
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"
--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby littletsu on Thu Feb 11, 2016 5:00 pm

The only one I read, with a very rich commentary:

http://www.amazon.com/Diamond-Sutra-Exp ... +explained

:heya:

P.S.: and why I recommend it...well, Nan Huai-Chin might represent a kind of Chan, that isn't so much the "mainstream" monastic tradition in China, Japan or the West. He was a lay master, and I believe left no "lineage holder" behind, but
had a huge following and reverence in the Chinese speaking world.
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby desert_woodworker on Thu Feb 11, 2016 8:30 pm

hi, Anders,

Well, I like the following, but for idiosyncratic reasons, so please bear that in mind:

THE DIAMOND SUTRA, and SUTRA OF HUI NENG, transl. A.F. Price, and Wong Mou-Lam, Shambhala, 1969.

I like it because it's bound together in one small book with the Platform Sutra of Huineng!

I've not done comparisons with other Diamond Sangha translations, though. So, caveat emptor! :tongueincheek: Perhaps there are better out there. But the book is a bargain, and good to have "around", no matter.

I see that Shambhala has re-issued the old book more recently, in their updated "Shambhala Classics" series. A used-copy should not set you back very much. E.g.:

http://www.amazon.com/Diamond-Sutra-Hui ... f+hui+neng

I see that Red Pine has a translation available, too, of the Diamond Sutra (DS). His sutra translations usually have sutra text on one page, and his own commentary and notes on the facing page (but I don't know if this is so in his DS transl.).

I wish I could find the transl. done by Charles Luk (Lu Kuan Yu), evidently published 2005, but I do not find it anywhere. I like Luk's writings on Ch'an very much, and his orientation or approach appeals, so I'd like to see what he does with the DS (any leads?). ;)

All best,

--Joe

EDIT: p.s. And, Anders, I note that Amazon lets you read online MOST (!) of the book -- the two sutras -- at this same link as above:

http://www.amazon.com/Diamond-Sutra-Hui ... f+hui+neng
Last edited by desert_woodworker on Thu Feb 11, 2016 10:43 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby Nonin on Thu Feb 11, 2016 10:15 pm

Anders,

I am by no means knowledgeable about Sanskrit or Chinese to English translations, but I have found Red Pine's translation of the Diamond Sutra the most readable, and the commentaries he includes highly valuable in coming to an intellectual understanding of the text.

Hands palm-to-palm,

Nonin
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Abbot and Head Teacher, Nebraska Zen Center / Heartland Temple, Omaha, Nebraska, USA
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Feb 12, 2016 1:50 am

Dwight Goddard's ground-breaking and classic, A BUDDHIST BIBLE (1932; 1938; 1966; 1970; etc.), contains the Diamond Sutra as translated to English by Wai-tao.

And in the two pages just before it, Goddard himself gives his own translation of the "Heart Sutra", the heart of the Diamond Sutra, rather, in which it is asserted, among other things, as we know, that,

"...there is no eye, ear, nose, tongue, body, mind; no color, sound, smell, taste, touch, object of thought; no seeing and so on to no thinking; no ignorance, and also no ending of ignorance, " (etc., etc.).

:Namaste:,

--Joe
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby another_being on Fri Feb 12, 2016 6:46 pm

http://www.diamond-sutra.com/diamond_sutra_translation.html

I like this online resource due to its readability and layout. You click the link at the bottom to go to the next page.
"Some people think they are enlightened, some people think they are not enlightened." -- Denko
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby Anders on Sat Feb 13, 2016 4:36 am

desert_woodworker wrote:I wish I could find the transl. done by Charles Luk (Lu Kuan Yu), evidently published 2005, but I do not find it anywhere. I like Luk's writings on Ch'an very much, and his orientation or approach appeals, so I'd like to see what he does with the DS (any leads?). ;)

This one I can help with. My first teacher was an admirer of Charles Luk due his ability to capture the spirit of translations. So I used this one for an old website I used to maintain.

Here is the link

http://web.archive.org/web/200402131546 ... -sutra.htm
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"
--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby Anders on Sat Feb 13, 2016 4:38 am

Nonin wrote:Anders,

I am by no means knowledgeable about Sanskrit or Chinese to English translations, but I have found Red Pine's translation of the Diamond Sutra the most readable, and the commentaries he includes highly valuable in coming to an intellectual understanding of the text.

Hands palm-to-palm,

Nonin


I will check this one out. Thanks.
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"
--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby littletsu on Sat Feb 13, 2016 2:25 pm

There is also a relatively new (2013) translation by Charles A. Muller online, with the Chinese "original".

http://www.acmuller.net/bud-canon/diamond_sutra.html
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby bubuyaya on Fri Feb 19, 2016 1:10 am

Anders wrote:I am looking at memorising the diamond sutra and for that would need to settle on a translation.
Multiple choices of different translations fire different reasons are also welcome.
I would very much appreciate if you could share a few words on why you recommend a given translation though.


I hav'nt found any rightly translated English Diamond Sutra yet.
Even I don't have any rightly translated Korean Diamond Sutra.
But here I say some to Anders and world zen people, to use Diamond sutra rightly.

Keep just some part of Diamond Sutra in Chinese is enough.
What I am saying is that just keeping the intention of, from first chapter's to seventh chapter's of Diamond Sutra, is enough for people's Thatagata-I awakening.
There may be some difficult drawing-like Chinese letters, but zen people may have the challenge to use Chinese-English dictionary.
That some part of Diamond Sutra's intention goes well through whole Diamond Sutra's.
And that Sutra's intention goes well through all Buddha's and Partriach's, even Jesus' teaching.

For example,
I here translate Diamond Sutra for people's pure zen to digest Sutra's intentiom.
So the people'S inner user is just people's Thatgata I, nothing else.

3. The Bodhisattva's Thatagata I

佛吿須菩提、諸菩薩摩訶薩應如是降伏
其心。所有一切衆生之類。若卵生若胎生若
濕生若化生。若有色若無色。若有想若無想。
若非有想非無想。我皆令入無餘涅槃而
滅度之。如是滅度無量無數無邊衆生、實
無衆生得滅度者。何以故。須菩提、若菩薩
有我相人相衆生相壽者相。卽非菩薩

Buddha said to Subhūti,
"Bodhisattva should guide his own mind and thoughts this-like rightly,
'All sorts of sentient beings(in my own mind land), whether they born from eggs, born from a womb, born from moisture or born from practice,
whether or not they have color sound sort beings or non color sound sort beings, whether or not they have emotion thought sort beings or non emotion thought sort beings, whether or not they have conscious act sort beings or non conscious act sort beings, I have guided wohle of them to be enterted in Nirvana, without any remainder.
And so immeasurable countless infinite sentient beings(in my own mind) have been guided in Nirvana, in fact, there is no sentient beings guided(in my mind land).'
Why?
Subhūti, Bodhisattva('s Thatagata I) never have such dependent I being, depentent people being, dependent sentient being, or dependent practicing being.
(Because whole of them are made of Me, Thatagata I.) "
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Feb 19, 2016 1:42 am

Read what you like, yes.

But, better -- if you have the opportunity -- awaken to true nature, yourself. And write your own sutra (or not write).

Best is to practice, that is. Well, quite as the Buddha did. He set the example for all.

We have teachers now more congenial than (Buddha) Shakyamuni's five teachers. Launch into it.

--Joe
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby Linda Anderson on Fri Feb 19, 2016 5:11 am

Bubu :rbow:
Buddha said to Subhūti,
"Bodhisattva should guide his own mind and thoughts this-like rightly,
'All sorts of sentient beings(in my own mind land), whether they born from eggs, born from a womb, born from moisture or born from practice,
whether or not they have color sound sort beings or non color sound sort beings, whether or not they have emotion thought sort beings or non emotion thought sort beings, whether or not they have conscious act sort beings or non conscious act sort beings, I have guided whole of them to be entered in Nirvana, without any remainder.
And so immeasurable countless infinite sentient beings(in my own mind) have been guided in Nirvana, in fact, there is no sentient beings guided(in my mind land).'
Why?
Subhūti, Bodhisattva('s Thatagata I) never have such dependent I being, depentent people being, dependent sentient being, or dependent practicing being.
(Because whole of them are made of Me, Thatagata I.) "


Joe,
The Diamond Sutra can be read without any remainder (see Bubu above), it is not up to us to say otherwise. It melted me. I went thru it line by line in a 7-day retreat with a Tibetan teacher about 10 years ago. And, I kept remembering koans all the way through. :) By then, I was practicing with zen sangha but they don't teach such things. I just saw the flyer at Whole Foods and the instant I saw it, I knew I wanted to go.... had no idea who the teacher was.... and didn't know anything about the Diamond Sutra either. I didn't have any money and cooked my way thru... Nothing remained... and, right in the middle of nirvanna, he left for two days to be sworn in as a US citizen... then he returned. :)X

One thing that I found very curious was that the Tibetan guys gave me their book by a zen translator at the end ... they felt it didn't quite match them, and I imagine that the reverse also applies. so sad, it was alive in the room. We had all found and printed copies off the web, but the teacher just talked about each point without reference to a book.

linda
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not this morning;
Melon flowers bloomed.
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby desert_woodworker on Fri Feb 19, 2016 4:42 pm

Linda Anderson wrote:... but the teacher just talked about each point without reference to a book.

Indeed, yes.

Memorization is a mind-training that was once necessary and popular (maybe universal) among practitioners (of all kinds) of the past. It was especially so when Buddhist practice was still a part of the "oral-tradition" -- when writings were scarce -- and when literacy -- in any case -- was rare.

The more-or-less "universal literacy" that has been created in modern societies through compulsory schooling has enabled people (most of us, say) to abandon this old and original practice of memorization. That's a pity, because it was/is great practice in mental concentration.

But we can take up the practice of memorization anytime. It's still available for everyone who's willing. ;)

I note that the Hindu teacher and translator, Eknath Easwaran (1910-1999), teaches memorization to his students. People memorize chosen texts from various traditions -- the Gita, Upanishads, Dhammapada, Sutras, Shastras, Bible, etc. If this interests anyone, maybe see his book PASSAGE MEDITATION -- BRINGING THE DEEP WISDOM OF THE HEART INTO DAILY LIFE (2008), or previous books of his. I think there's also an organization he founded, with successors who continue to teach in the way he did, and even hold lengthy retreat practices. A link to a place describing that book is here:

http://www.amazon.com/Passage-Meditatio ... h+easwaran

best,

--Joe
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby Anders on Sun Mar 27, 2016 3:49 pm

Thanks all.

bubuyaya - I do have a copy of the diamond sutra in excellent calligraphy that was a gift from a bikshu in Taiwan. Although I can barely read any Chinese, I might take you up on this.

:Namaste:
"Even if my body should be burnt to death in the fires of hell
I would endure it for myriad lifetimes
As your companion in practice"
--- Gandavyuha Sutra
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby bubuyaya on Mon Mar 28, 2016 1:42 am

Anders wrote:I do have a copy of the diamond sutra.
Although I can barely read any Chinese.
I might take you up on this.


Hi, Anders.
We have littletsu's here, http://www.acmuller.net/bud-canon/diamond_sutra.html
Let's try to translate Diamond sutra of Chinese letters for world people and for us.

Would you start begin to translate the next for us?
The next begins,

"妙行無住分
復次須菩提菩薩於法應無所住行於布
施所謂不住色布施不住聲香味觸法布
施須菩提菩薩應如是布施不住於相何
以故若菩薩不住相布施其福德不可思
量須菩提於意云何東方虛空可思量不
不也世尊須菩提南西北方四維上下虛空
可思量不不也世尊須菩提菩薩無住相
布施福德亦復如是不可思量須菩提菩
薩但應如所教住"

We may use whatever available resourses for us.
Don't be afraid for Ander's Diamond sutra.
Any mistranslation comes then that shall be transformed to diamond.

Have nice day, Anders. :Namaste:
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby fukasetsu on Mon Mar 28, 2016 11:46 pm

bubuyaya wrote:Buddha said to Subhūti,
"Bodhisattva should guide his own mind and thoughts this-like rightly,
'All sorts of sentient beings(in my own mind land), whether they born from eggs, born from a womb, born from moisture or born from practice,
whether or not they have color sound sort beings or non color sound sort beings, whether or not they have emotion thought sort beings or non emotion thought sort beings, whether or not they have conscious act sort beings or non conscious act sort beings, I have guided wohle of them to be enterted in Nirvana, without any remainder.
And so immeasurable countless infinite sentient beings(in my own mind) have been guided in Nirvana, in fact, there is no sentient beings guided(in my mind land).'
Why?
Subhūti, Bodhisattva('s Thatagata I) never have such dependent I being, depentent people being, dependent sentient being, or dependent practicing being.
(Because whole of them are made of Me, Thatagata I.) "


Nice bubu, but there's no right or wrong translation, but each translation can either function correctly or incorrectly,
which depends on.... :heya:

Have a nice day.
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby bubuyaya on Tue Mar 29, 2016 1:06 am

fukasetsu wrote:
bubuyaya wrote:Buddha said to Subhūti,
"Bodhisattva should guide his own mind and thoughts this-like rightly,
'All sorts of sentient beings(in my own mind land), whether they born from eggs, born from a womb, born from moisture or born from practice,
whether or not they have color sound sort beings or non color sound sort beings, whether or not they have emotion thought sort beings or non emotion thought sort beings, whether or not they have conscious act sort beings or non conscious act sort beings, I have guided wohle of them to be enterted in Nirvana, without any remainder.
And so immeasurable countless infinite sentient beings(in my own mind) have been guided in Nirvana, in fact, there is no sentient beings guided(in my mind land).'
Why?
Subhūti, Bodhisattva('s Thatagata I) never have such dependent I being, depentent people being, dependent sentient being, or dependent practicing being.
(Because whole of them are made of Me, Thatagata I.) "


There's no right or wrong translation, but each translation can either function correctly or incorrectly,
which depends on....


Hi, fukasetsu.

You mean something.
Would you explain your idea or intention more?

Have nice day. (!!)
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby bubuyaya on Thu Mar 31, 2016 2:51 pm

bubuyaya wrote:
Anders wrote:I do have a copy of the diamond sutra.
Although I can barely read any Chinese.
I might take you up on this.


"妙行無住分
復次
須菩提菩薩於法應無所住行於布
施所謂不住色布施不住聲香味觸法布
施須菩提菩薩應如是布施不住於相何
以故若菩薩不住相布施其福德不可思
量須菩提於意云何東方虛空可思量不
不也世尊須菩提南西北方四維上下虛空
可思量不不也世尊須菩提菩薩無住相
布施福德亦復如是不可思量須菩提菩
薩但應如所教住"


In history only Partriach Huineng had opened Diamond sutra's core.
Other zen masters. though they had been famous in their country, couldn't open Diamond's.
Some of them had said, "Don't see sutra. Just practice."
After their death, so today, students may say, "Don't listen their words."
They are right? Sutra is right?

Thoughts, imagination, words are not divided from people's I.
Forms, emptyness, colors and flowers are not different from people's I..
Because all is just people's "X", so people's Thatagata I.

When different staff is always different, then how people return Thatagata I?
Jesus, what is not divided from Alpha and Omega, also say at Thomas gospel,
(72) A man said to him, "Tell my brothers to divide my father's possessions with me."
He said to him, "O man, who has made me a divider?"
He turned to his disciples and said to them, "I am not a divider, am I?"

Today right now, Jesus is not divided from people's Thatagata I, as all Buddhas are.

Anyhow, in this chapter.
What is 妙行, 無住 and 復次.
Scholars may do better word to word translation,
but for Sutra's core, hint.

妙行 means Thatgata's life.
無住 means The pure I, always free from whatever attachment.
復次 means, "Thatagata say, for one example case of Bodhisattva's Thatagata life....

Therfore
"Live Nirvana" may be chapter's title,
or, Bodhisattva's Nirvana life, or Bodhisattva's Thatgata life, etc, may be title.

Seed is right, so right Bodhi flower is.
People don't become ghost in the empty.
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Re: Recommend me a diamond sutra translation

Postby fukasetsu on Fri Apr 01, 2016 12:55 am

bubuyaya wrote:Hi, fukasetsu.

You mean something.
Would you explain your idea or intention more?

Have nice day. (!!)


Hi buby, perhaps later since I'm currently abroad and only have access via phone...but I think you understand already my intentions, let's say it is not divided, if one is in division, one is in imagination...so on what does it depend if a sutra is rightly or not?
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