The Dhāraṇī of the Jewel Torch
Degé Kangyur, vol. 100 (gzungs, e), folios 3.b–54.b
Translated by David Jackson
under the patronage and supervision of 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha
First published 2020
Current version v 1.4.22 (2022)
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The Dhāraṇī of the Jewel Torch starts with a profound conversation between the Buddha and the bodhisattvas Samantabhadra and Mañjuśrī on the nature of the dharmadhātu, buddhahood, and emptiness. The bodhisattva Dharmamati then enters the meditative absorption called the infinite application of the bodhisattva’s jewel torch and, at the behest of the millions of buddhas who have blessed him, emerges from it to teach how bodhisattvas arise from the presence of a tathāgata and progress to the state of omniscience. Following Dharmamati’s detailed exposition of the “ten categories” or progressive stages of a bodhisattva, the Buddha briefly teaches the mantra of the dhāraṇī and then, for most of the remainder of the text, encourages bodhisattvas in a long versified passage in which he recounts teachings by a bodhisattva called Bhadraśrī on the qualities of bodhisattvas and buddhas. Some verses from this passage on the virtues of faith have been widely quoted in both India and Tibet.
Translated by David Jackson and edited by the 84000 editorial team. The introduction, also by the 84000 editorial team, expands on an original version by David Jackson. The translation was completed under the patronage and supervision of 84000: Translating the Words of the Buddha.
The generous sponsorship of Make and Wang Xiao Juan (馬珂和王曉娟), which helped make the work on this translation possible, is most gratefully acknowledged.
Translated, checked, and verified by the Indian preceptor Surendrabodhi and the chief editor and translator, Bandé Yeshé Dé.
The present text (Toh 847), and all those contained in the same volume (gzungs ’dus, e), are listed as being located in volume 100 of the Degé Kangyur by the Buddhist Digital Resource Center (BDRC). However, several other Kangyur databases—including the eKangyur that supplies the digital input version displayed by the 84000 Reading Room—list this work as being located in volume 101. This discrepancy is partly due to the fact that the two volumes of the gzungs ’dus section are an added supplement not mentioned in the original catalog, and also hinges on the fact that the compilers of the Tōhoku catalog placed another text—which forms a whole, very large volume—the Vimalaprabhānāmakālacakratantraṭīkā (dus ’khor ’grel bshad dri med ’od, Toh 845), before the present volume, numbering it as vol. 100, although it is almost certainly intended to come right at the end of the Degé Kangyur texts as volume 102; indeed its final fifth chapter is often carried over and wrapped in the same volume as the Kangyur dkar chags (catalog). Please note this discrepancy when using the eKangyur viewer in this translation.
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