The Chapter on Going Forth
- Palgyi Lhünpo
Degé Kangyur, vol. 1 (’dul ba, ka), folios 1.a–131.a
Translated by Robert Miller and team
under the patronage and supervision of 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha
“The Chapter on Going Forth” is the first of seventeen chapters in The Chapters on Monastic Discipline, a four-volume work that outlines the statutes and procedures that govern life in a Buddhist monastic community. This first chapter traces the development of the rite by which postulants were admitted into the monastic order, from the Buddha Śākyamuni’s informal invitation to “Come, monk,” to the more elaborate “Present Day Rite.” Along the way, the posts of preceptor and instructor are introduced, their responsibilities defined, and a dichotomy between elders and immature novices described. While the heart of the chapter is a transcript of the “Present Day Rite,” the text is interwoven with numerous narrative asides, depicting the spiritual ferment of the north Indian region of Magadha during the Buddha’s lifetime, the follies of untrained and unsupervised apprentices, and the need for a formal system of tutelage.
This translation was carried out from the Tibetan by Robert Miller with the guidance of Geshé Tséwang Nyima. Ven. Lhundup Damchö (Dr. Diana Finnegan) provided her draft translation of the extant Sanskrit portions of this chapter. Dr. Fumi Yao and Maurice Ozaine kindly identified numerous misspellings and mistakes in the glossaries. Both Ven. Damchö and Dr. Yao generously shared their extensive knowledge of the Mūlasarvāstivādin Vinaya and furnished invaluable assistance in researching the translation. Matthew Wuethrich served as style consultant and editor.
The translation was completed under the patronage and supervision of 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha.
The generous sponsorship of Zhou Tian Yu, Chen Yi Qin, Irene Tillman, Archie Kao, and Zhou Xun, which helped make the work on this translation possible, is most gratefully acknowledged.
According to traditional accounts, after the Buddha had entered parinirvāṇa, the elder Kāśyapa proposed that the Blessed One’s teachings be recited for posterity. During the rains retreat at Rājagṛha that followed, Kāśyapa asked the venerable Upāli to recall the Buddha’s pronouncements on monastic discipline and the venerable Ānanda to recite the Buddha’s discourses. One hundred years later, a second council was convened at Vaiśālī to resolve disagreements that had arisen in relation to the code of monastic discipline, or vinaya.1
Shortly after the Second Council, the monastic community split into two factions, “the Elders” (Skt. Sthavira) and “the Majority” (Skt. Mahāsāṃghika). In time, for reasons of discipline, doctrine, or geography, the two factions branched further into eighteen schools. Among these were the Mūlasarvāstivādins.2
Although there is, as yet, no scholarly consensus on the exact origins of this school, we know the Mūlasarvāstivādins were well established in northwest India, between Mathura, Kashmir, and Gandhāra, during the Kuṣāṇa Kingdom’s zenith in the second and third centuries ᴄᴇ. We also know that they eventually compiled the longest of the six complete codes of monastic discipline still available to us.3
The Mūlasarvāstivādins’ monastic code is comprised of several texts,4 which Tibetans, the foremost inheritors of this tradition, group into the “Four Scriptural Divisions of the Vinaya”: the Vinayavastu, Vinayavibhaṅga, Kṣudrakavastu, and Uttaragrantha. The Vinayavastu details the statutes and procedures that govern the institutions of monastic community life. The Vinayavibhaṅga narrates the circumstances that prompted the formulation of each of the monastic vows given in the Prātimokṣasūtra. The Kṣudrakavastu discusses miscellaneous minutiae of monastic life under eight headings. The Uttaragrantha, in its complete form, contains eleven texts including Upāli’s questions to the Buddha regarding monastic discipline, along with the Vinītaka, the Nidāna, and the Kathāvastu.
Though similar in general outline to most of the other extant monastic codes, the Mūlasarvāstivāda Vinaya is more eclectic in content and character.5 It is no dry legal code or mere vade mecum for disciplinary measures. Instead it is a rich bricolage of stories, discourses, ritual handbooks, community guidelines, and catalogs of monastic discipline, with passages and texts from a diverse range of genres like sūtra, avadāna, and nidāna.6
The first of the Mūlasarvāstivāda Vinaya’s four Scriptural Divisions is the Vinayavastu. A partial translation into Chinese, containing at least seven of the chapters, was made by the Chinese monk Yijing, in the late seventh to early eighth centuries ᴄᴇ,7 but the only complete redaction of all seventeen chapters of the Vinayavastu is the ninth-century translation into Tibetan made by Palgyi Lhünpo under the guidance of the Kashmiri preceptor Sarvajñādeva, the Indian preceptor Vidyākaraprabha, and the Kashmiri preceptor Dharmākara. Their work was later proofread and finalized by Vidyākaraprabha and the translator/editor Paltsek.
For centuries the Vinayavastu, and indeed much of the Mūlasarvāstivāda Vinaya, was known only through these Tibetan and Chinese translations, or from thematic excerpts like the Divyāvadāna,8 and all Sanskrit manuscripts of the full text appeared to have disappeared without a trace. Then, in 1931, a cowherd from a small village near Gilgit dug up one of many mounds dotting his community’s pasturelands. He was looking for wood, which could sometimes be found at such sites, but instead stumbled upon a large chamber littered with coin-like clay tablets. Thinking he had disturbed a grave, he grew scared and fled. Word of his find spread quickly and before long a more intrepid local went in search of treasure. What he found was a wooden chest of Buddhist manuscripts dating from the fifth or sixth century ᴄᴇ, which wound up in the hands of the district headman in whose possession Sir Aurel Stein found them. After two further excavations and much work by both European and South Asian scholars, Nalinaksha Dutt edited and published the finds as The Gilgit Manuscripts.9 Most of the vinaya manuscripts enshrined in the reliquary near Gilgit come from the Vinayavastu.10
Although large portions of the Vinayavastu in Sanskrit were thus recovered in the Gilgit manuscripts, the ninth-century Tibetan translation remains the only complete version known today, and it is primarily on the basis of the Tibetan that the translations to be published here have been, and are being, made. The present translation is of the first chapter, and subsequent chapters will appear in due course.
The Vinayavastu is similar in its themes to the Theravādin Khandhaka (Skt. Skandhaka) still extant in Pali.11 Both detail the communal rites, formal procedures, and disciplinary measures that give order and coherence to the monastic community as well as the types of clothes, food, shelter, and medicine allowed community members.12 To appropriate Prebish’s useful explanation of the differences between the Skandhaka and Sūtravibhaṅga13 and apply it here by way of analogy, while the Vinayavibhaṅga describes the vows that govern individual behavior, the Vinayavastu spells out the rules that govern communal behavior. This communal emphasis is immediately apparent when one considers the contents of the Vinayavastu’s seventeen chapters:
5. The Carmavastu (“The Chapter on Leather”) details the rules regarding the use of leather hides for clothing, footwear, bedding, and seating.
6. The Bhaiṣajyavastu (“The Chapter on Medicine”) discusses the medicines allowed monastics, such as ghee, sesame oil, honey, and molasses; what monastics should not consume, such as human flesh; and related subjects, such as how medicine should be stored, under what circumstances monastics are allowed to cook for themselves, and how to respond to a hostile doctor.18
9. The Kauśāmbakavastu (“The Chapter on the Monks of Kauśāmbī”) outlines the procedures adopted to arbitrate disputes and allows for expulsion from the saṅgha community. These procedures were formulated in the wake of a major dispute that arose when the monks of Kauśāmbī expelled a group of monks from Vaiśālī.
10. The Karmavastu (“The Chapter on Formal Acts of Saṅgha”) gives a short summary of the one hundred and one different official acts that require the saṅgha community’s sanction. These acts all fall into one of three categories depending on the procedure needed for ratification: acts of motion alone require only a motion; acts whose second member is a motion require a motion followed by the statement of the act; and acts whose fourth member is a motion require a motion followed by the statement of the act, repeated three times.
11. The Pāṇḍulohitakavastu (“The Chapter on a Group of Troublesome Monks”) details the five types of disciplinary acts that may be imposed on intransigent monastics, such as censure, chastening, expulsion, reconciliation, and suspension. Its name derives from the site of a dispute in which quarrelsome monks refused to admit to their guilt.21
13. The Pārivāsikavastu (“The Chapter on Probations”) describes how to discipline, through the imposition of probations and penances, a monk who has a incurred saṅgha stigmata offense. This chapter also allows for such a monk’s reinstatement as a full member of the community upon successful completion of a probation and penance.
The above are but summaries of each chapter’s ostensible themes. In several cases, most notably the Bhaiṣajyavastu and the Saṅghabhedavastu, avadāna narratives and important events in the Buddha’s life figure far more prominently than any discussion of communal guidelines on medicine, schisms, or the like. Those interested in detailed summaries of each chapter can find them in Csoma de Körös’s Analysis of the Dulva, Banerjee’s Sarvāstivāda Literature, and Dutt’s introductions to his Gilgit Manuscripts.23 For now, suffice it to say that the Vinayavastu has the same eclectic make-up that scholars have come to associate with the Mūlasarvāstivāda Vinaya in general, and that distinguishes it from the other extant monastic codes.
The first chapter of the Vinayavastu, translated here, is “The Chapter on Going Forth.” It describes how the rite of going forth, the formal rejection of household life and entry into the Buddhist order of renunciants, went from a simple and open invitation extended by the Buddha in person to an elaborate rite with admission criteria that could be performed by any monk with sufficient knowledge and reliability.
The chapter can be broadly divided into thirds. The first third of the text (“Śāriputra”) tells the story of Śāriputra and Maudgalyāyana’s spiritual search. It provides the historical background for the rise of the Buddhist order against a backdrop of other renunciant orders active in the eastern Gangetic basin in the fifth century ʙᴄᴇ. The middle third (“Going Forth” through “Querying Upasena”) describes the three stages the admission rite underwent as the order grew, from the earliest “Come, monk” ordinations, through the Early Rite, and on to the Present Day Rite.24 The last third (“Tīrthikas” through “Persons Whose Hands Have Been Cut Off”) describes the circumstances that led to the adoption of the Present Day Rite’s admission criteria.
Throughout these three sections a number of important themes can be discerned: the opposition between śramaṇa ascetics and brāhmaṇa householders,25 the existence of a fecund religious scene at the time of the Buddha, the need for official procedures and positions as the Buddhist monastic community grew from an informal group of followers into a spiritual corporation, the importance of a monastic apprenticeship, and the recognition that some people are not suited to life as a Buddhist renunciant.
“The Chapter on Going Forth” begins in earnest with the story of how Upatiṣya and Kolita came to join the Buddhist order. These two, under the names Śāriputra and Maudgalyāyana, would go on to become the foremost of the Buddha’s disciples. But to begin with they are just young brahmins, well-schooled in Vedic learning and assured of bright futures. In time Upatiṣya proves himself to be a brilliant interpreter of the Vedas, while Kolita, a talented teacher in his own right, is expected to succeed his father as royal priest to the King of Rājagṛha. Though each hears of the other’s reputation from their young brahmin students, they do not meet until the feast of the nāga kings Giri and Valguka, where they recognize one another as kindred spirits. After securing their parents’ consent, they forego their given destinies and set off in search of a renunciant order to join.
At the time, Rājagṛha and its surroundings are teeming with renunciant orders, and the two spiritual seekers quickly secure audiences with six of the leading tīrthika teachers.26 The pair questions each teacher about his practice and philosophy, and each is found to teach a ruinous path and rejected.27 Eventually Upatiṣya and Kolita come across the teacher Sañjayin who, they are told, has “withdrawn into seclusion.” Duly impressed, they are won over and join his order upon hearing his philosophy—that “the Dharma is truth and non-violence; the peaceful, ageless, immortal, and unwaning state is Brahman.” Before long, however, Sañjayin passes away and the two move on, bringing the first section to a conclusion.
On first encounter this section is disorienting. It begins by meandering through an account of the struggle between the kingdoms of Aṅga and Magadha, with a brief interlude describing the Buddha’s birth, before tracing the rise of two brahmins named Māṭhara and Tiṣya. Only after thirty pages of war and genealogy do we meet the two main protagonists. To appreciate the purpose of this long prologue, one must step back to view the Vinayavastu as a whole and understand that interwoven through the text’s seventeen chapters is one of the most extensive biographies of the Buddha available in any language.28 These first episodes, then, are more than mere diversion; they are the first installments of an epic tale that takes shape over the Vinayavastu’s 2,500 pages.
From a literary perspective, this first chapter exemplifies the Vinayavastu’s composite nature,29 where history sits embedded between parable and technical manual. While we know almost nothing about by whom, how, or why this text was compiled in this way, this synthesis is not likely to be ad hoc or random. Rather, diverse elements are drawn in and made to serve a range of purposes. The tale of the six tīrthika teachers, for example, fulfills narrative, partisan, and historical ends. Narratively, it explains how Upatiṣya and Kolita eventually came to the Buddha’s order. In its telling, it emphasizes their exacting standards so that their rejection of each teacher’s philosophy and eventual embrace of the Buddha’s implies the superiority of the Buddhist order.
Historically speaking, it surveys the spiritual landscape of Greater Magadha at the time of the Buddha. Though the text does not emphasize the connections, scholars have linked several of the tīrthika teachers to the major non-Vedic orders of the day: Jñātiputra is better known as Mahāvīra, leader of the Nirgrantha Jain order and the last Jain Tīrthankara; Gośālīputra was a prominent Ājīvika leader;30 Ajita may have been an important Cārvāka teacher;31 and Pūraṇa has been called the foremost of five hundred Ājīvikas, though the philosophy attributed to him here resembles neither Gośālīputra’s fatalism nor that of the Digambara Jains whom Buddhists sometimes referred to as Ājīvikas.32
The second third of the text describes the way the admission rite changed as the Buddha’s renunciant order grew. A short interlude under the heading “Querying Upasena” then spells out the terms of a new monk’s apprenticeship to a more senior monk and provides criteria to determine when a monk is sufficiently established in his ordination to live as a teacher and act as a preceptor or instructor himself.
Those familiar with the modern-day ordination rite may be surprised by the original rite’s simplicity. Postulants, personified by Upatiṣya and Kolita in this chapter, would ask the Buddha for permission to join his order. With the words, “Come, monks. Live the holy life,” the Buddha admitted them into his order and ordained them monks. This simple invitation is known as the “ordination by saying, ‘Monk, come.’ ”
But as the Buddha’s fame grew, it became less practicable for the Buddha himself to accept and ordain every postulant. While the rite itself was simple enough, anyone wanting to go forth had to see the Buddha in person, which for some meant a long and arduous journey. When the Buddha heard that a postulant coming to see him had died on the way, he permitted the saṅgha to admit new members and ordain them.
The monks, not knowing how to admit and ordain postulants, asked the Blessed One about it, and he responded by prescribing a short but formalized rite now known as the “Early Rite.” The new rite required postulants to request the saṅgha three times, after which an officiant monk would move that the saṅgha act on the request. By remaining silent, the saṅgha signaled its assent, and the postulant was formally admitted to the order and ordained a monk.
Since the Early Rite permitted monks to accept new members but made no provisions for training them, the new rite solved a logistical problem but did nothing to address an equally, if not more, pressing problem: helping new members establish themselves in a new code of conduct and a new way of life. Consequently, some new monks had no sense of decorum and were poorly behaved. Local brahmins and householders even complained of being harassed by them. The new monks would come to town to beg alms, disheveled and improperly dressed, speaking shrilly in loud voices, behaving wildly, and demanding they be fed.
When a monk fell ill and died for lack of someone to nurse him, the elder monks felt obliged to take action. Such gross neglect of one’s fellow brahmacārin was too much and the saṅgha asked the Buddha to intervene. After some consideration, the Buddha created the positions of preceptor and instructor and charged the monks in those roles with the responsibility of ordaining and instructing new monks.
But again the monks found themselves in a quandary, not knowing how to admit and ordain postulants, and so again they asked the Buddha. This time, the Buddha prescribed a longer and more formal rite of admission and ordination, with stricter acceptance criteria and a novel division of the community into lay devotees, novices, and monks. This rite pertains to the present day and is known in the tradition as the “Present Day Rite.”
The Present Day Rite codified a hierarchy in the Buddhist renunciant order, through which a postulant gains admission into the order, is inducted into the novitiate, and is ordained a monk. An outline of the ritual found in the text is given in the appendix, “An Outline of the Ordination Rite.”
The final third of the text goes back in time to examine the circumstances that prompted the introduction of a screening process for postulants. The exclusionary criteria, deemed “impediments to ordination,” are all explained by origin stories (Tib. gleng gzhi, Skt. nidāna), as exemplified by the chapter “Creatures.”
This chapter, by far the longest in the section, tells the story of Saṅgharakṣita, ostensibly to explain why creatures—specifically nāgas that can assume human form—are not allowed to join the Buddhist renunciant order. Several lesser origin stories, explaining, for instance, what a monk administrator can be expected to account for and why a monk should not teach without first being asked to do so, are enfolded into the greater story of Saṅgharakṣita and the nāga monk.
This section also contains several avadāna, most notably in the story of how a shape-shifting nāga gained the karma to become a monk. Avadāna are didactic stories (or “karmic histories”) that explain a given circumstance in light of the past act that brought it about.33 Other examples of avadāna from this section include what happens when monks fight over food, deface saṅgha property, and withhold food and drink from other monks.
The layering does not end there, either. A Vedic seer’s sarcastic remark about Buddhist monks’ propensity to preach at the slightest provocation becomes the pretext for Saṅgharakṣita’s teaching the Nagaropama Sūtra, while Saṅgharakṣita’s efforts to establish the Buddha’s teachings in the land of nāgas becomes a chance to discuss the Sūtra Piṭaka’s “Four Divisions of the Discourses.”34
Soon afterwards, in a series of four articles, Claus Vogel and Klaus Wille published a carefully revised edition of the Sanskrit fragments of the Pravrajyāvastu recovered in Gilgit.36 They scrupulously annotated the editorial process to produce an edition that, in contrast to earlier Sanskrit editions, is free of reconstructions and indicates clearly the uncertainties created by damage to, or missing portions of, the original manuscripts. They also incorporated further fragments of the manuscript that had not been definitively identified at the time previous Sanskrit editions were prepared. The fragments fall into two groups: those from the beginning of the chapter (Sanskrit folios 2–12), and those toward the end (folios 43–53). Together these Sanskrit fragments correspond to about one hundred of the 261 pages of the chapter in the Degé Kangyur. To place the fragments in their proper context, Vogel also translated relevant sections of the text, from the Tibetan for the portions corresponding to folios 2–12, and from the Sanskrit for the portions corresponding to folios 43–53.
In the present translation, the exact correlations between the Sanskrit and the Tibetan are noted in the form of folio references to Vogel and Wille’s edition (folio numbers preceded by S) as well as the usual folio references to the Tibetan of the Degé (preceded by F).
Andy Rotman has translated from Sanskrit many of the avadāna narratives to be found in the Divyāvadāna, a collection of such stories compiled in Nepal and dating probably to the seventeenth century. The individual stories in the Divyāvadāna very closely match equivalent passages in the Vinayavastu or, in some cases, other sections of the Mūlasarvāstivāda Vinaya. In the present first chapter, the only parallels to the Divyāvadāna are the narratives of Saṅgharakṣita and the shape-shifting nāga, which can be found translated in Rotman’s second volume.37 There are several other translations of the same passage from the Divyāvadāna.38
One of the difficulties in translating vinaya texts lies in finding appropriate English equivalents for the language of Buddhist monasticism. In several instances we have borrowed terms from Christianity such as “ordination” and “monk,” even though they may only bear a superficial similarity to their Buddhist analogs.39 Another difficulty lies in the historical fact that the language of Buddhist renunciation was adapted from a body of terms and ideas common among Greater Magadhan ascetic communities in the sixth and fifth centuries ʙᴄᴇ.40 As is to be expected when different religious communities employ the same words, they come to have unique connotations, the most relevant of which we might now consider.
First and foremost is the term pravrajyā, which in its widest application referred to the act of “going forth,” that is, renouncing the settled life of a householder to live as a wandering ascetic. In pre-Buddhist India, the act of going forth often took a ritual form and was made dramatically visible “by shaving off the hair and beard and laying aside the layman’s dress, to cover oneself with rags, with bark or hemp, or to wander in the nude.”41 In the present translation, we render pravrajyā (Tib. rab tu ’byung ba) as “to go forth” (or, in a small number of cases, “to join the renunciant order”) while one who goes forth (Tib. rab byung) is a “renunciant.”
In the Pravrajyāvastu, we meet several Vedic and non-Vedic ascetics who have undertaken pravrajyā. Some, such as Gośālīputra and the Lokāyata ascetic Dīrghanakha, are described as “wandering mendicants” or parivrājaka,42 but those who join the Buddha’s order are described as śramaṇa, translated here as “ascetic.”43 The term śramaṇa, from the verbal root śram meaning “to toil,” was used to describe non-Vedic ascetics, especially Buddhist and Jain ones.44 In our text, it is applied repeatedly to both the Buddha and his followers, as when an older man posing as a monk challenges the authenticity of the Buddha’s ordained status by asking, “Who is the śramaṇa Gautama’s preceptor?” and in the phrase “the śramaṇa sons of the Śākya.”
The Buddha’s followers accepted this as an appropriate designation, as when Śāriputra says to Buddharakṣita, “It is those who issue from people like you that become my śramaṇa attendants.” As the Buddha himself also frequently referred to his community as śramaṇa, it is not surprising that the term chosen to describe “novice” śramaṇa was śrāmaṇera , the diminutive form of śramaṇa.
Ascetic sons of the Śākya who ordained were called bhikṣu. This term, too, was used outside the Buddhist tradition. Gautama, the brahmin author of the Gautama Dharmasūtra, gives bhikṣu, meaning “mendicant,” as the third of four lifestyles open to followers of the Vedas.45 In this context, a mendicant was either an ascetic who relied on alms (partly or fully provided by relatives) or a hermit who had severed all ties with his former worldly life.
Another phrase that points to a shared language among ascetics is the term brahmacaryā, rendered here as “to live the holy life.” This phrase appears repeatedly in this chapter in stock passages, most significantly in the Buddha’s invitation, “Come, monk. Live the holy life,” and in the remark made by those who have attained arhatship: “My births have come to an end, I have lived the holy life, I have done what needed doing, I will know no lives after this one.”
The phrase also figures prominently in Śāriputra and Maudgalyāyana’s questions for the six tīrthika teachers: “What is the result of living the holy life? What are its benefits?” Although the exact meaning of the phrase is never spelled out, the commentator Kalyāṇamitra glosses it as a life of “hardships” or “austerities.”46 Kalyāṇamitra’s interpretation is probably best understood as an explanation of Śāriputra and Maudgalyāyana’s assumptions about what it meant to “live the holy life.” For, as a Jain, Jñātiputra would certainly have equated “the holy life” with austerities, but it is not certain whether any of the other five would have.47 It does, however, seem likely that many of these teachers would have understood “the holy life” to entail celibacy; and that is how the term is now understood in the Buddhist tradition, where a lay devotee who takes a vow of celibacy is described as a brahmacārin upāsaka (Tib. tshangs spyod dge bsnyen).
The present translation is based on the Tibetan text in the Degé Kangyur, with reference to the text in other Kangyurs as detailed in the endnotes. Ven. Lhundup Damchö’s draft translation of the extant Sanskrit found in Nalinaksha Dutt’s Gilgit Manuscripts, together with Claus Vogel and Klaus Wille’s revised Sanskrit edition and translation, were used as guides to check for variations between the Tibetan and Sanskrit. Although there are numerous differences between the Tibetan and Sanskrit manuscripts, very few of them bear significantly on the overall understanding of the text. We have chosen to note only the most important divergences and, for the rest, would refer readers to Vogel and Wille’s works.
A great many of our translation choices are based on glosses given by the late eighth-century master Kalyāṇamitra49 in his Extensive Commentary on The Chapters of Discipline.50 On the whole, Kalyāṇamitra’s citations mirror the relevant passages from the root text. However, there is enough variation between the root text and his commentary—direct quotations purportedly from the root text which have no correlate in any of the Tibetan redactions, important passages of the root text not glossed in the commentary, differences in key terms—to suggest Kalyāṇamitra may have been working from a different edition of the Vinayavastu than that which was available to the Tibetan translators and their Indian informants.51 And although it does not bear directly on the present work, it should also be noted that the Tibetan translation of Kalyāṇamitra’s commentary appears to be incomplete. Presumably, Kalyāṇamitra commented on all seventeen chapters of the Vinayavastu, but the Degé, Coné, and Narthang editions of his commentary all end abruptly after the thirteenth fascicle, four pages into his comments on the Vinayavastu’s third chapter, the Pravāraṇāvastu.52
The Vinayavastu contains a great deal of repetition. Such repetition ranges in length from short, stock phrases to an entire chapter in which the only change is in the gender of a single character (see “Matricide” and “Patricide”). Aiming to retain the original work’s style and flavor, which may point to its oral origins, in accordance with 84000’s editorial policies we have avoided the temptation to elide these repetitive passages. On the other hand, we have tried in places to help the reader by inserting proper names in places where the original provides only pronouns.
Though technically the present work is the first of the Vinayavastu’s seventeen chapters, we have chosen to break the “chapter” into parts based on the list of contents found in the prologue and those parts into chapters based on the indices found at the start of each section.
In the chapter on the ordination rite itself, the Tibetan text gives a short heading for each part of the ritual at the end of the relevant section. To assist the reader and conform to English typographical norms, we have placed the heading at the start of the relevant section.
In closing, we ask forbearance for whatever mistakes and omissions the translation contains.
This was translated by the Kashmiri preceptor Sarvajñādeva, the Indian preceptor Vidyākaraprabha, the Kashmiri preceptor Dharmākara, and the translator Bandé Palgyi Lhünpo. It was then revised and finalized by the Indian preceptor Vidyākaraprabha and the managing editor-translator, Bandé Paltsek.202
|S||Stok Palace Manuscript|
rab tu ’byung ba’i gzhi (Pravrajyāvastu). Toh 1, ch. 1, Degé Kangyur, vol. 1 (’dul ba, ka), folios 1.a–131.a.
rab tu ’byung ba’i gzhi. bka’ ’gyur (dpe sdur ma) [“Pedurma” Comparative Edition of the Kangyur], krung go’i bod rig pa zhib ’jug ste gnas kyi bka’ bstan dpe sdur khang (The Tibetan Tripitaka Collation Bureau of the China Tibetology Research Center). Beijing: krung go’i bod rig pa dpe skrun khang (China Tibetology Publishing House), 2006–2009, vol. 1, pp. 3–308 and pp. 722–67.
Vogel, Claus and Klaus Wille (1984). “Some Hitherto Unidentified Fragments of the Pravrajyāvastu Portion of the Vinayavastu Manuscript Found Near Gilgit,” in Nachrichten der Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1–41. Göttingen: Philologisch-Historische Klasse, 1984.
———(1992). “Some More Fragments of the Pravrajyāvastu Portion of the Vinayavastu Manuscript Found Near Gilgit: Part 1: Saṅgharakṣitāvadāna,” in Sanskrit-Texte aus dem buddhistischen Kanon: Neuentdeckungen und Neueditionen III, edited by Heinz Bechert et al, 65–109. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 1992.
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