What Language to learn?

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What Language to learn?

Postby Namu Butsu » Thu May 29, 2014 2:43 am

For someone who wants to study Mahayana, what language would be best to learn? Sanskrit, Chinese, Japanese, Korean?
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"Just say the nembutsu and be liberated" Shinran Shonin
"However hard it may be to bid farewell to this world, when the conditions that bind us to this saha [samsara] realm run out, we are powerless to do anything as the final hour arrives and we are swept away to that Land." -A Record in Lament of Divergences
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Re: What Language to learn?

Postby PorkChop » Thu May 29, 2014 3:00 am

I'd say learning to read Classical Chinese might get you the most bang for your buck - because then you'd be able to read the online CBETA (Chinese Tripitaka), Tripitaka Koreana, and the Taisho. Sanskrit's another option that's good, but given the somewhat limited number of sanskrit copies of foundational East Asian Buddhist texts, I'd still probably go with reading Classical Chinese.
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Re: What Language to learn?

Postby Namu Butsu » Thu May 29, 2014 3:40 am

Thanks Porkchop! This is something worth contemplating. I know a guy at my job that speaks fluent Chinese and is versed in classical Chinese. I'm sure he could help me out
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"Just say the nembutsu and be liberated" Shinran Shonin
"However hard it may be to bid farewell to this world, when the conditions that bind us to this saha [samsara] realm run out, we are powerless to do anything as the final hour arrives and we are swept away to that Land." -A Record in Lament of Divergences
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Re: What Language to learn?

Postby Dodatsu » Thu May 29, 2014 11:28 am

On top of Chinese, learn a bit of Japanese (reading) as a lot of materials are written in Japanese, especially modern commentaries and scholarship.
Contemplating the power of Tathagata's Primal Vow,
One sees that no foolish being who encounters it passes by in vain.
When a person single-heartedly practices the saying of the Name alone,
It brings quickly to fullness and perfection [in that person] the great treasure ocean of true and real virtues.
- Shinran Shonin
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Re: What Language to learn?

Postby PorkChop » Thu May 29, 2014 12:58 pm

Dodatsu wrote:On top of Chinese, learn a bit of Japanese (reading) as a lot of materials are written in Japanese, especially modern commentaries and scholarship.


Not to hijack the thread, but are there any you could recommend?
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