Avatamsaka-sutra


Avatamsaka-sutra
or Garland Sutra

Mahayana Buddhist sutra that explores the teachings of the Buddha Gautama.

It speaks of the deeds of the Buddha and the resulting merits that blossom like a garland of flowers. It begins with the Buddha's Enlightenment attended by a chorus of bodhisattvas and divine beings. It describes an assembly in the palace of Indra, where the Buddha teaches that all beings have the Buddha nature. Around AD 400 a Chinese translation appeared, Huayan jing, which gave rise in the 6th century to the Huayan sect, which became in Japan the Kegon school. See also Vairocana.

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▪ Buddhist text
in full  Mahavaipulya-buddhāvataṃsaka-sūtra (Sanskrit: “The Great and Vast Buddha Garland Sutra”),  also called  Garland Sūtra,  

      voluminous Mahāyāna Buddhist text that some consider the most sublime revelation of the Gautama Buddha's teachings. Scholars value the text for its revelations about the evolution of thought from primitive Buddhism to fully developed Mahāyāna.

      The sutra speaks of the deeds of the Buddha and of their resulting merits that blossom much like a garland of flowers. The discourse begins with the Buddha's Enlightenment, attended by an anthem chorus of bodhisattvas (those destined to become enlightened) and divine beings as numerous as the atoms of all the worlds. There follows a great assembly in the palace of the god Indra, whom Buddha instructs, and similar assemblies in other celestial regions accompanied by manifestations of great glory. In such settings the Buddha teaches that all beings have the Buddha nature, that all phenomena are mutually originating and interdependent, and that, finally, all is Buddha.

      Several versions of the text seem to have existed, one reputedly containing as many as 100,000 verses. A translation entitled Hua-yen ching first appeared in China around 400. There it gave rise in the 6th century to the Avataṃsaka school, otherwise known as the Hua-yen sect—a movement that reached its climax, as the Kegon school, in 8th-century Japan. The text has also given rise to a large number of commentaries.

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Universalium. 2010.

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