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A Study of Dun-Huang Manuscript P2305 A Text of Expounding the Lotus Sutra: Regarding Its Stylistic Rules and Thoughts


本文自形式與內容兩面討論伯2305號《妙法蓮華經講經文》。在形式方面,這件文書不脫敦煌講經文的一般體例,亦有其特殊之處。緊接著經文後的長行說解的第一句話通常類似於整句經文的科文。科文有講經文作者自訂者,但多半引用或參考窺基的《法華玄贊》。於文學表現手法上,作者擅長山林景致與人世情狀的描寫;也製造峰迴路轉的戲劇效果。 在思想內容方面,賦含通俗佛教文化的趣味。古代主要的中印《法華經》注釋書,不論是將刁難求法國王的仙人視為惡人,或認為這種惡行僅是一種方便,都同意仙人為國王怨家的角色,這應與佛教傳統對提婆達多的刻板印象有關。伯2305號的仙人形象則全然是大善知識的展現,與提婆達多的惡徒印象完全脫鉤。這是對說經法師的肯定,也帶有迎合世俗佛教的努力。此外,講經文中所教化者多是人生短促苦迫、造業死墮惡道、增福德消罪業等人天善法內涵,以及出世離俗的山林修行傾向,不出通俗的佛教觀念。

Parallel abstracts

This article discusses Dun-Huang manuscript P2305 ”A Text of Expounding the Lotus Sutra” from the aspects of structure and content. As regards the aspect of structure, this manuscript follows the general stylistic rules of Dun-Huang manuscripts, and has its specific structure also. The first sentence of the explanation in prose which follows a quotation from the Lotus Sutra is usually the headline. Some of these headlines is given by the author himself, and most of them borrowed from Kui-ji's A Commentary on The Profound Meaning of the Lotus Sutra. With regard to the style of writing, the author was skilled in the description of landscape and the real situation of humane existence. Regarding the aspect of thought, the explanation in this manuscript is mainly oriented towards worldly Buddhist practices. The main commentaries of the Lotus Sutra by the ancient Buddhist scholars in India and China whether regard the hermit (devadatta's previous existence) as a wicked person or consider his deeds as a kind of expedient means; all agree that the hermit was a foe of the king (Buddha's previous existence).This must be attributed to the bad impression devadatta made on the Buddhist members. The image of the hermit in P2305, however, is really a good teacher, totally disconnected from that bad impression. This may be due to a positive appreciation of the speaker of the Lotus Sutra and the endeavour to cater to the audience of popular Buddhist believers. Moreover, most of the teachings taught in this manuscript are with in the scope of getting the advantages of men and gods, just as the human life is short and full of sufferings, unwholesome karmas lead to bad destinations, to increase merits and decrease sins, etc…, and to renounce the family to practice Buddhism in the forest.