Paul Copp: "Manuscript Culture and the Ritualist's Craft at Dunhuang"

This is an Archive of a Past Event

This talk explores what manuscripts found at Dunhuang can tell us about the composition of Buddhist ritual forms in ninth and tenth centuries China. It takes manuscript liturgies, such as those centering on the Diamond Sutra and the Incantation of Great Compassion, as case studies, exploring three basic features of their making: 1. the  natures of the frames by which texts were made the focuses of recitation rites, 2. the borrowings and adaptations of existing materials of which those frames were made, and 3. the understandings of the nature of scriptural language implicit in these practices.