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Diamond Sutra: the perfection of wisdom (with commentaries from the Chinese and the Sanskrit)
"They shall be the most remarkably blessed
of bodhisattvas, Bhagavan, who hear what is said
in this sutra and give birth to a perception of its truth."
—from Chapter Fourteen
Zen Buddhism is often said to be a practice of "mind-to-mind transmission" without reliance on texts-in fact, some great teachers forbid their students to read or write. But Buddhism has also inspired and accumulated some of the greatest philosophical texts of any religion. Two works lie at the centre of Zen: The Heart Sutra, which monks recite all over the world, and The Diamond Sutra, said to contain answers to all questions of delusion and dualism. This is the Buddhist teaching on the "perfection of wisdom" and the diamond of its title is said to cut through everything on its way to enlightenment. It is perhaps the most studied of all the sutras, and by one count more than twenty thousand commentaries are noted.
Red Pine is a celebrated translator and Buddhist scholar who has worked with this text for many years. He has consulted dozens of commentaries, in Chinese and in Sanskrit, to offer this brilliant new translation that includes extensive commentary intended to present this important text in a new light. The result is a work of inspiration and guidance for those interested in spiritual practice from any culture.
RED PINE (Bill Porter) was born in Los Angeles in 1943 and grew up in Northern Idaho. Following a tour of duty in the U.S. Army, he attended college at U.C. Santa Barbara and graduate school at Columbia University. Uninspired by the prospect of an academic career, he dropped out of Columbia halfway through a Ph.D. program in anthropology in 1972 and moved to a Buddhist monastery in Taiwan. After four years with the monks and nuns, he finally struck out on his own and eventually found employment at English-language radio stations in Taiwan and Hong Kong, where he interviewed local dignitaries and produced more than a thousand programs about his travels in China. His published translations include the complete poems of Cold Mountain (Han-shan), Pickup (Shih-te), and Big Shield (Feng-kan), as well as the works of Stonehouse (Shih-wu), Sung Po-jen (for which he was awarded a PEN West translation prize), and Lao-tzu (for which he was a finalist for the same award). He is also the author of Road to Heaven: Encounters with Chinese Hermits. He currently lives in Port Townsend, Washington.
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