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Solonin K.J. "The Twenty-Five Answers Concerning the Buddhist Principles": A Tangut Buddhist Manual from St. Petersburg Tangut Collection // Written Momuments of the Orient [Письменные памятники Востока], 2(9), 2008. P. 147-170.


The Tangut Buddhist texts preserved in St. Petersburg Institute of Oriental Studies (Rus¬sian Academy of Sciences) have attracted scholarly attention since the very beginning of Tangut studies as a separate field. The value of the Buddhist sources in Tangut language is twofold: on the one hand, they throw some light on the development and contents of the Buddhist faith in the Tangut area; on the other hand, they demonstrate the peculiarities of the development of Chinese Buddhism itself. Several attempts in this regard have been undertaken recently, but are not exactly satisfactory. However, initial research into the Tangut Buddhism has also demonstrated outstanding potential for this kind of research. Still, there are two major obstacles, which hindered the progress of the Tangut studies, especially research into the Tangut Buddhist texts. One is the nature of the Tangut language itself, while the other is the lack of the reference material and historical data necessary for the proper understanding of the texts and their location within the general framework of East Asian Buddhism. Insofar, Tangut Buddhist texts are treated as some kind of a curiosity, rather than an object for proper scholarly research in its own right. Therefore, one of the appropriate approaches to the research of the Tangut Buddhist texts, especially those not found in their Chinese or Tibetan versions might be their broad presentation to the scholarly public in their most readable form. In this regard I see my responsibility as a Tangut scholar to provide Chinese reconstructions (or Chinese versions), however tentative they might seem, of the relevant texts and preparing translations with the utmost possible accuracy...

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Keywords


Buddhist Doctrine
Chan Buddhism
Chan-Huayan
Tangut Buddhism
Tangut manuscripts
WMO, selected papers

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