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Lectures by Prof. von Rospatt and Prof. Bianchi

Giugno 3 @ 15:30 - 17:00

Ester Bianchi – University of Perugia

Visualising the Corpse in Modern China: The Rediscovery of the Meditation on Impurity in the Writings of Republican Buddhist Masters

3 June 2021, 15:30 (CET)
Zoom meeting


Alexander von Rospatt – University of California, Berkeley

The Practices of the Buddhist Laity as Depicted in the So-Called Pārājikā. Texts from Nepal

3 June 2021, 17:00 (CET)
Zoom meeting


Abstract: “Among the texts composed in Sanskrit in the Nepalese tradition after Mahāyāna Buddhism had disappeared elsewhere in South Asia is a body of closely related texts—attributed to the Buddha or Mañjuśrī, or Lokeśvara or, it seems, Vajrasattva—that treat inter alia the topic of pārājikā, whence they have been called pārājikā texts. These texts do not engage with the four cardinal transgressions (pārājikā) entailing automatic and irreversible loss of monastic status, but rather treat rituals of atonement for offenses including capital offenses such as murder. They also cover other aspects of Buddhist lay practice including life cycle rituals (saṃskāra), daily routine and mortuary practices. Thus these texts shed welcome light on the practices of common Newar Buddhists in the pre- and early modern era. In doing so they provide much needed historical grounding for research into the Nepalese tradition, about which we continue to be informed in the main through anthropological fieldwork. At the same time the pārājikā texts also supplement and complicate the treatment of lay practices found in the treatises on ‘beginner’ (ādikarmika) bodhisattvas authored in the orbit of Vikramaśīla in the late 11th and 12th centuries. Rather than offering a sustained analysis of these so-called pārājikā texts, this talk will draw on my first foray into this hardly studied literature and provide a first introduction.”


Giugno 3
15:30 - 17:00