Reeves' contemporary version, Kato's Threefold Lotus, and Watson's Lotus seems to have received most praise.
Why do you consider Murano's version to be the best one? I can't find any reviews or comments on it, so it's hard to make an interpretation of its "quality", so to speak.
My interest is the version where the focus is on the essential meaning. All the sutras are, in my opinion deeply metaphysical, in comparsion with the modern materialist-positivist attitude we live by today. Any extra layers (other than what is already there) of poetical translation/interpretation, would only obscure the original intent.
As for your comment on the Mahayana sutras truth claims, I do infact have an idea for a topic on that one, already. I'll leave my comments to that.
Your analogy make sense, though.
I have found a site that sells copies of Murano's translation:http://www.nichiren-shu.org/books/lotus2.html
And a pdf-version:http://www.nshi.org/Lotus%20Sutra/Saddh ... nglish.htm
add: Watson has released another version as well, called The Essential Lotus. Is it the same as the first one, only smaller?
second add: it seems that Reeves has translated dharmas
Does it really help to clarify the sutra, considering how the word "dharmas" are used in buddhist texts?
I like Murano's version best on the subjective basis that it's easiest for me to read, and I have it on good authority that the translation is appropriate to the meaning of the text. It's the one we use for recitation and study at the Tendai Buddhist Institute, so there may be a force-of-habit aspect to it as well.
I agree with the general thrust of your claim that it's best to find a rigorous and clear translation without too much interpolation (Reeves translates the Indic pantheon of supernatural creatures as titans, centaurs, dragons... a decision of debatable value).
I don't think I understand the distinction you allude to between the metaphysical on one side and the positivistic on the other; positivism is definitely a metaphysics (in the sense of an ontology), while materialism as I understand it is intended as a critical antidote to metaphysical idealism, which is to say, Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism
is a rigorously materialistic work in this sense. It could be that I understand these terms differently from the way you intended them, or we just value different things in these texts.
The Essential Lotus is a redacted version of the Watson translation of the Lotus Sutra. Pocket-sized.
Reeves does translate dharmas as things when it alludes to things. That's one of the senses of the word "dharma" in this discourse. I don't think he translates it that way in all cases, though, as when it means Dharma the Teaching. Threefold Lotus Sutra translates it as "Law."
I hope this is helpful to you.
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