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The Story of Sudhana and Manoharā: An Analysis of The Texts and the Borobudur Reliefs


The story of Sudhana is one of the most popular of the avadānas of Northern Hīnayāna Buddhism. There are two main versions of this story, one adopted by the Mahāsanghika school and the other by the mūla-Sarvāstivāda school. The former is preserved in the Mahāvastu under the title Kinnarījātaka, and a similar version of this story is found in a Chinese collection called Liu-tu-chi-ching ‘Collection [of tales to illustrate] the six pāramitās’, said to have been translated in approximately A.D. 270 (Taishō Tripiṭaka, in, no. 152, 44 f.) and accessible to us in Chavannes's Tripitạka (Cinq cents contes et apologues, no. 80). The mūla-Sarvāstivāda redaction is found in a Vinaya text of that school called the Bhaiṣajya-vastu. It was translated by I-ching and is referred to as Ken pen chouo … by Chavannes (iv, 133).

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Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies
  • ISSN: 0041-977X
  • EISSN: 1474-0699
  • URL: /core/journals/bulletin-of-the-school-of-oriental-and-african-studies
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