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Prince Shōtoku’s Commentary on the Śrīmālā-sūtra


Complete in one volume, here is one of three Buddhist commentaries written in classical Chinese that have been attributed to Japan’s Prince Shōtoku (574–622). The author comments on the Śrīmālā Sutra (also published by BDK) and provides an updated view of its themes of “the womb of the Buddha” and “one vehicle” (both concepts suggesting that all sentient beings have the ability to become Buddhas).

SKU: BDKT042C Category: Product ID: 567
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Taishō 2185

Volume 56

This work is a commentary on the Śrīmālā-sūtra (Taisho No.16), and is considered to be the earliest of the “Commentaries on Three Sūtras” (Jp. San-gyō-gi-sho) composed by Prince Shōtoku. The Nihon-shoki (“Chronicles of Japan”) records that Prince Shōtoku gave a discourse on the Śrīmālā-sūtra for Empress Suiko. It is considered that Prince Shōtoku chose this particular sūtra as the subject of his discourse to the Empress probably because the protagonist of the Śrīmālā-sūtra is a woman, Śrīmālā, and Empress Suiko was the first Empress in Japanese history. The present work was then put together in book-form in Chinese at a later date. Be that as it may, there is no changing the fact that this was the first written work composed by a Japanese.

Jp. Shōmangyō gisho (勝鬘經義疏), attributed to Prince Shōtoku. 1 fascicle.

Additional information

Dimensions9.5 × 6.5 × 0.7 in
Publishing Date2011
AuthorShōtoku Taishi (Prince Shōtoku)
TranslatorMark W. Dennis