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Speaking for Buddhas: Scriptural Commentary in Indian Buddhism

 
Richard F. Nance (Author)
Synopsis

Buddhist intellectual discourse owes its development to a dynamic interplay between primary source materials and subsequent interpretation, yet scholarship on Indian Buddhism has long neglected to privilege one crucial series of texts. Commentaries on Buddhist scriptures, particularly the sutras, offer rich insights into the complex relationship between Buddhist intellectual practices and the norms that inform-and are informed by-them. Evaluating these commentaries in detail for the first time, Richard F. Nance revisits-and rewrites-the critical history of Buddhist thought, including its unique conception of doctrinal transmission.

Attributed to such luminaries as Nagarjuna, Vasubandhu, Dignaga, and Santideva, scriptural commentaries have long played an important role in the monastic and philosophical life of Indian Buddhism. Nance reads these texts against the social and cultural conditions of their making, establishing a solid historical basis for the interpretation of key beliefs and doctrines. He also underscores areas of contention, in which scholars debate what it means to speak for, and as, a Buddha.

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Bibliographic information

Title Speaking for Buddhas: Scriptural Commentary in Indian Buddhism
Format Hardcover
Date published: 31.12.2014
Edition 1st. ed.
Language: English
isbn 9789381406304
length 307p., 9.5 inch X 6.5 inch