Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

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Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

Postby vinodh » Thu Feb 09, 2012 9:02 pm

Hi All,

I would like to know Books that are Buddhist Sanskrit Texts that be used as a complimentary text books (and ofcourse Dharma along side :twothumbsup: ) to learn Sanskrit. It serves two fold, one is to learn Sanskrit ofcourse, and the next to get accustomed to the Vocabulary & Style of the Buddhist Texts.

I was asking a friend of mine who is a Vedic Scholar and he was suggesting the following as complimentary books for learning Sanskrit:

laghusiddhāntakaumudī

raghuvaṁśaḥ
kirātārjunīyam
naiṣadham
campūrāmāyaṇasya prathamaṁ kāṇḍadvayam
svapnavāsavadattam
veṇīsaṁhāraḥ
śākuntale
tarkasaṅgrahaḥ

Ofcourse apart from the Tarkasangraha, and Campuramayana, others are quite secular Mahakavayas [which are to be studied for Classical Sanskrit).

But I am kinda looking for a Buddhist Sanskrit Crash Course :)

If any one could suggest a good Buddhist Texts list like that of the above, it would be very much grateful :meditate:

V
http://www.virtualvinodh.com

yo dharmaṁ paśyati, sa buddhaṁ paśyati

One who sees the Dharma, sees the Buddha
śālistamba sūtra

na pudgalo na ca skandhā buddho jñānamanāsravam
sadāśāntiṁ vibhāvitvā gacchāmi śaraṇaṁ hyaham

Neither a person nor the aggregates, the Buddha, is knowledge free from [evil] outflows
Clearly perceiving [him] to be eternally serene, I go for refuge [in him]
saddharma-laṅkāvatāra-sūtra
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Re: Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

Postby tantular » Fri Feb 10, 2012 10:50 am

Are you learning from scratch, or do you already know standard Sanskrit? What kind of Buddhist texts do you want to read—sūtra, jātaka/avadāna, śāstra, kāvya, stotra, nāṭaka, tantra, sādhana?
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Re: Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

Postby Kare » Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:10 pm

Look for Franklin Edgerton: Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Grammar and Dictionary (2 vols), and his Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Reader. They can be found here:

http://www.abebooks.com/servlet/SearchR ... &x=36&y=16
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Re: Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

Postby Jinzang » Fri Feb 10, 2012 3:02 pm

The Saurananda is easy to get a hold of, not too difficult to translate, and an enjoyable read.
Imagine a man who stands before a mirror; a stone strikes it, and it falls to ruin all in an instant. And the man learns that he is himself, and not the mirrored man he had believed himself to be.
-- Gene Wolfe
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Re: Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

Postby vinodh » Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:26 am

tantular wrote:Are you learning from scratch, or do you already know standard Sanskrit? What kind of Buddhist texts do you want to read—sūtra, jātaka/avadāna, śāstra, kāvya, stotra, nāṭaka, tantra, sādhana?


I know basic Sanskrit i.e Vibhaktis, Lakaraas, Avyayas, Various verb formations etc.

In short, I can read and understand Simple & Basic Sanskrit. I don't think that is enough to read the Sutras, Shastras in their original language and comprehend them,

I am kinda looking for a good mix of the above (I'll ignore Tantra & Sadhan-s for now). Perhaps, the content more inclined towards Sutras, Avadanas & Shastras.

:namaste:

V
http://www.virtualvinodh.com

yo dharmaṁ paśyati, sa buddhaṁ paśyati

One who sees the Dharma, sees the Buddha
śālistamba sūtra

na pudgalo na ca skandhā buddho jñānamanāsravam
sadāśāntiṁ vibhāvitvā gacchāmi śaraṇaṁ hyaham

Neither a person nor the aggregates, the Buddha, is knowledge free from [evil] outflows
Clearly perceiving [him] to be eternally serene, I go for refuge [in him]
saddharma-laṅkāvatāra-sūtra
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Location: St Andrews, Scotland

Re: Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

Postby ratna » Sat Feb 11, 2012 7:50 am

You can head over to GRETIL and pick a text that interests you. Kamalaśīla's first Bhāvanākrama is a nice short śāstra that has been used in Sanskrit courses at some universities.
Also, Clay Sanskrit Library for parallel Sanskrit and English texts, e.g. Dīvyāvadāna.
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Re: Learning Buddhist Sanskrit !

Postby tantular » Sun Feb 12, 2012 1:25 pm

vinodh wrote:I am kinda looking for a good mix of the above (I'll ignore Tantra & Sadhan-s for now). Perhaps, the content more inclined towards Sutras, Avadanas & Shastras.


First I would try some of the very short sūtras, such as the Prajñāpāramitāhṛdaya, the Pratītyasamutpāda, the Pratītyasamutpādādivibhaṅganirdeśa, & the Nairātmyaparipṛcchā (all transliterated on the GRETIL site linked by Ratna). These are philosophically interesting, grammatically easy, full of fundamental Buddhist vocabulary, and no more than a page or two in length.

Some interesting, slightly longer sūtras, progressively more difficult: Śālistamba, Vajracchedika, Mahākarmavibhanga.

The Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit Reader—already mentioned above—is a good introduction to prose narrative and gāthās in longer sūtras, with manageable selections from the Lalitavistara, Mahāvastu, Saddharmapuṇḍarīka, and some others.

For śāstra, Nāgārjuna's Pratityasamutpādahṛdayakārikā + vyākhyāna is the shortest & easiest complete śāstra (i.e. root verses + commentary). Then Vasubandhu's Vijñaptimātratāsiddhi with commentary, then the Triṃśikāvijñaptikārikā with Sthiramati's bhāṣya. Then Vasubandhu's commentary on the Madhyāntavibhāga. Even if you aren't particularly interested in yogacāra, I think it's best to start with these, as they're short and Vasubandhu has a concise yet clear style.

Aśvaghoṣa's Saundarānanda, already mentioned above, is the easiest Buddhist mahākāvya. Śrī Harṣa's Nāgānanda is the best Buddhist play.

Since you live in a part of India where traditional Sanskrit learning is still strong, it would be a shame to only study on your own, though. Anyone who wants to read any kind of Sanskrit would benefit from studying the Laghusiddhāntakaumudī and a little Kālidāsa with a pandit (especially if they teach entirely in Sanskrit). If they're willing to read Buddhist texts with you, that can also be very interesting and helpful.
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