Tonglen in Sanskrit?

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Tonglen in Sanskrit?

Postby zenman » Sun May 11, 2014 7:33 am

Tonglen is Tibetan. What is it in Sanskrit? Thank you.
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Re: Tonglen in Sanskrit?

Postby Aemilius » Thu May 15, 2014 9:07 am

The expression comes from the oral teachings of Dipankara Atisha. Atisha had made the journey across the sea to Indonesia, where he learned these teachings about compassion, which had been lost in India. Mahayana buddhism had earlier spread to Indonesia. Atisha stayed there about 12 years.
It seems that these teachings do not exist in a written form in sanskrit.
The word itself means "take and give", which should not be too difficult to construct in sanskrit.
To get the correct meaning you would have to formulate it: "take others' suffering on oneself and give them one's own happiness", or something along those lines.
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Re: Tonglen in Sanskrit?

Postby zenman » Thu May 15, 2014 9:37 am

Right. Anyone fluent in Sanskrit? :)
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Re: Tonglen in Sanskrit?

Postby Aemilius » Wed May 21, 2014 9:06 am

Seems that You will have to start studying sanskrit Yourself.
You could start from the Omniglot article of sanskrit:
http://www.omniglot.com/writing/sanskrit.htm
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Re: Tonglen in Sanskrit?

Postby Tom » Wed May 21, 2014 2:12 pm

zenman wrote:Tonglen is Tibetan. What is it in Sanskrit? Thank you.


Just saw this. It is an interesting question.

I have never seen the equivalent of tonglen as a Sanskrit compound, but if someone like Śāntideva were to express this it would probably be something like - “dadati gṛhṇati ca.” A compound might then look like “dānagrahaṇam” or “dānagraha.”

Generally, when Śāntideva talks about giving himself he uses the word dadāmi, and when he talks about taking/accepting others’ suffering he uses the word gṛhṇāmi. For example,

svaduḥkhaśāntyarthaṃ paraduḥkhaśamāya ca dadāmy anyebhya ātmānaṃ parān gṛhṇāmi cātmavat.
rough translation… For the purpose of pacifying the suffering of myself, and for the purpose of pacifying the suffering of others, may i give myself to others, and may I accept others as like myself (8:136)

Here the dadāmi (I give) is translated in Tibetan as gtang/gtong, but the gṛhṇāmi (I accept) is translated as gzung. However, earlier in verse 133 gṛhṇanti (accept/take) is translated in Tibetan as “len”. See…

tyaktvānyo ’nyasukhotpādaṃ dṛṣṭādṛṣṭasukhotsavam |
anyo ’nyaduḥkhanād ghoraṃ duḥkhaṃ gṛhṇanti mohitāḥ ||133||

| mthoṅ ṅam ma mthoṅ bde ’grub pa yi | | phan tshun bde skyed yoṅ bor źiṅ |
| gźan la sdub bsṅal byas pa’i rgyus | | rmoṅs rnams sdug bsṅal myi zad len |

So rendering tonglen as “dānagraha” should be acceptable. You could also check in the mahāvyutpatti for the sanskrit equivalents of gtong and len. Just had a quick look there and it seems len pa is often a translation of pratigraha and so then also ... dānapratigraha.
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Re: Tonglen in Sanskrit?

Postby zenman » Wed May 21, 2014 2:21 pm

Thanks Tom!
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