Steinkellner, Krasser & Lasic, Viśālāmalavatī 2 (2013)

Ernst Steinkellner, Helmut Krasser, Horst Lasic (eds.) Jinendrabuddhi´s Viśālāmalavatī Pramāṇasamuccayaṭīkā Chapter 2. Sanskrit Texts from the Tibetan Autonomous Region, Vols. 15/1, 15/2. Beijing & Vienna: China Tibetology Publishing House Austrian Academy of Sciences Press, 2013. 149+111 pp. ISBN-13: 978-3-7001-7134-8.

斯齐,卡热萨,斯坦因凯勒校勘 (編) 《吉年陀罗菩提《集量论》广大清净疏第二章:全二册 梵文、英文分享到》 中国藏学出版社 2013

[Publisher information updated from provided cover image, 2013/7/3. See also: Series’ official site]

Viehbeck, Ju Mi pham vs. Dpa’ ris Rab gsal (2012)

Actual title:

Viehbeck, Markus. ‘The case of ‘Ju Mi pham (1846–1912) and Dpa’ ris Rab gsal (1840–1912): a study in Dgag lan Debate’. Dr. phil. Dissertation, Universität Wien, 2012. xxx+357 pp. [official site / PDF]

From the Abstract

The present dissertation is a case study in dgag lan debate, a specific form of debate that developed in Tibet, conducted through the exchange of texts. The dispute that is investigated evolved between the Rnying ma scholar ‘Ju Mi pham (1846–1912) and his Dge lugs opponent Dpa’ ris Rab gsal (1840–1912) and centres on the correct interpretation of the ninth chapter of the Bodhicaryāvatāra, an Indian work (7th–8th ct. CE) that is of pivotal importance to the understanding of Madhyamaka thought. Polemics were exchanged over a period of about 27 years and involved the composition of six treatises, which makes this particular debate one of the most extended cases of its kind.

International Conference on Tibetan History &c. (2013-7-13)

四川大学中国藏学研究所(会议主办)、哈佛燕京学社(会议协办): “7至17世纪西藏历史与考古、宗教与艺术国际学术研讨会”。 中国·成都·四川大学 2013年7月13-15日。

Center for Tibetan Studies of Sichuan University & Harvard-Yenching Institute (co-conveners). ‘International Conference On Tibetan History And Archaeology, Religion And Art (7th–17th c.)’. Sichuan University, Chengdu, China, July 13–15, 2013. [official site / 2nd circular w/ abstracts]

会议召集 人:霍 巍 教授(四川大学)、范德康 教授(哈佛大学)

Conference conveners: Prof. Huo Wei (Sichuan University) & Prof. Leonard W.J. van der Kuijp (Harvard University).

7至17世纪西藏历史与
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Facsimile Edition of All Palmleaf MSS in the TAR (2012?)

བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས་སུ་ཉར་ཚགས་བྱས་པའི་ཏ་ལའི་ལོ་མའི་དཔེ་ཆ་ཀུན་བཏུས་པར་མ།
《西藏自治区珍藏贝叶经影印大全》(共61分册)
*Facsimile Edition of Palmleaf Manuscripts in the Tibet Autonomous Region: Complete Collection. 2012(?). 61 vols.

བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས་སུ་ཉར་ཚགས་བྱས་པའི་ཏ་ལའི་ལོ་མའི་དཔེ་ཆ་ཀུན་བཏུས་ཀྱི་དཀར་ཆག་བསྡུས་པ།
《西藏自治区珍藏贝叶经影印大全简目》
*Facsimile Edition of Palmleaf Manuscripts in the Tibet Autonomous Region: Complete Collection. Brief Index. 2012(?).

བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས་སུ་ཉར་ཚགས་བྱས་པའི་ཏ་ལའི་ལོ་མའི་དཔེ་ཆ་བྲིས་མའི་རྩ་བའི་དཀར་ཆག།
《西藏自治区珍藏贝叶经总目录》(共4册)
*Master Catalogue of Palmleaf Manuscripts in the Tibet Autonomous Region. 2012(?). 4 vols.

61-volume Facsimile edition of Palmleaf MSS in the TAR (via Tibet TV)
Palmleaf MSS in the TAR, 61 volumes (via Tibet TV)

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Tachikawa, Essays in Buddhist Theology (2012)

Tachikawa, Musashi. Essays in Buddhist Theology. Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, November 2012. ISBN-13: 978-8120835405. INR 500. [official]

A translation of Budda no tetsugaku (1998) [corrected].

Cover note
“Buddhism does not recognize a concept of the existence of God (theos) such as found in Christianity, but here theos is not used to refer only to an absolute deity like the Christian god. By “theology,” the author means the systematic delineation of the confrontation with the condition of the times while carrying on the engagement between the divine and oneself.
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Steinkellner, ‘News from the Manuscript Department’ (2011)

Old news for most:

Steinkellner, Ernst. ‘Opening speech: News from the manuscript department.’ In Krasser, Lasic, Franco & Kellner (eds)., Religion and Logic in Buddhist Philosophical Analysis: Proceedings of the Fourth International Dharmakīrti Conference, Vienna, August 23–27, 2005. Beiträge zur Kultur- und Geistesgeschichte Asiens Nr. 69. Vienna: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 2011, pp.xvii–xxi. [PDF]

Briefly: the author of the Hetubinduṭīkātātparyavyākhyā (2d, p.xx), “a certain Jayabhadra (?)” is quite unlikely to have been “a scholar belonging to Nepalese royalty”; this would be unprecedented. At least one tantric commentary by an ācārya called Jayabhadra was preserved in Nepal, and I suppose it is not out of the question that this person had access to Bhaṭṭa Arcaṭa’s commentary, but I am unaware of any reference to him holding the post of rājaguru (a title which was not unknown in India).

Locating the original material doesn’t seem to be high on the agenda: “as of September 2007 the result has been: Nothing. (By the end of 2010: still no changes)” (p.xxi n.9). This is a surprising statement. On the one hand, the collaborators are accused, implicitly, of ineptitude; on the other, it is an admission that ‘our side’ cannot improve anything. Time to end the monopoly and hand the baton to someone who can get the job done.

Then there is the mention of several (Sanskrit?) pramāṇa texts on “Bhutanese paper”, p.xx, which also sounds weird.

Book of the Year: ‘Hardships and Downfall of Buddhism’

Giovanni Verardi (appendices by Federica Barba). Hardships and Downfall of Buddhism in India. Nalanda-Sriwijaya Series 4. Delhi/Singapore: Manohar & Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2011. 523 pp.

Not a very catchy title, but I doubt that something more direct (say, The Hindu Extermination of Buddhism) would have been very appealing to Singapore’s Nalanda-Sriwijaya Centre, the book’s publisher.

This book is an extraordinary achievement, all the more so for it relying only indirectly, for the most part, on scriptural and epigraphic sources. Verardi’s contribution is based on something at least as useful: first-hand observation of the key sites and remains, clearly articulated in terms of long-term patterns. It is by far one of the most important contributions to the study of Buddhism in India published in a long time — though I don’t agree with everything in it, by any means. (Given the chance, I will expand on that later.) The omission of any discussion of the Theravādins’ catastrophic role, painstakingly explained in Peter Schalk’s 2002 Buddhism among Tamils volumes, has to be regarded as particularly puzzling — at least until one sees Peter Skilling’s name in the acknowledgements. But let me be clear: Verardi, who has pursued his line of inquiry for over three decades, has succeeded in making sense out of a slew of data in a way that is unlikely to be bettered for some time.