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Close-up view of Stone Pagoda with Scriptures (Jingmu shita 經目石塔) first tier, Kongque dong 孔雀洞 Anderl, Christoph


The Stone Pagoda with Scripture Titles (Ch. Jingmu shita 經目石塔) located in Kongque dong 孔雀洞, Anyue xian 安岳縣, Sichuan sheng 四川省 dates to the Song dynasty (960-1279). The first tier of the pagoda displays inscriptions of four major scriptures, namely the Huayan Jing 華嚴經 (Skt. Avataṃsaka sūtra), Baoji Jing 寶積經 (Skt. Mahāratnakūṭa sūtra), Bore Jing 般若經 (Skt. Prajñāpāramitā sūtra), Niepang Jing 涅槃經 (Skt. Mahāparinirvāṇa sūtra). They are carved in the most prominent positions of the pillars. The Prajñāpāramitā section, Mahāratnakūṭa section, and the Mahāsaṃnipāta section were inscribed on the remaining pillars on the first tier. The characters are evenly-sized and well-proportioned, many displaying an angularity that seems to be intentionally aesthetic. For example, four titles are shown in image [12]: 1) Daji yuezangjing 大集月藏經, a section of the Daji jing 大集經 (Mahāsaṃnipata-sūtra) translated by Narêndrayaśas (Ch. Naliantiyeshe 那連提耶舍). 2) Dayun jing 大云經 (Mahāmegha-sūtra) translated by Dharmakṣema (Ch. Tan Wuchen 曇無讖) during the Northern Liang dynasty 北涼 (414–421 CE). 3) Daji rizangjing 大集日藏經, a section of the Daji jing 大集經 (Mahāsaṃnipata-sūtra). 4) Ru lengqie jing 入楞伽經 (Laṅkâvatāra-sūtra), a text that held enormous influence among many schools in all regions of East Asia, including such disparate traditions as East Asian Yogâcāra (Ch. Faxiang 法相) where it was considered to be one of the six orthodox scriptures 六經, and Chan, where it is associated with some of the early founders of the Chinese tradition. Another example are the three sutra titles carved in image [15]: 1) Faguang da zhuangyan jing 方廣大莊嚴經 (Skt. Lalitavistara) and the Baiyu jing 百喻[經]. The first one stands as a biographical account of the life of the Buddha based upon a Mahāyāna 大乘 perspective covering the period from the Buddha's birth in Tuṣita heaven until his first sermon. The second one can be rendered as ""The Sutra of the 100 Parables"", transalted in Chinese by Guṇavṛddhi in 492. 2) Mahāparinirvāṇa-sūtra (Ch. Daban nihuan jing 大般泥洹[經]). This sutra was translated in Chinese between the 416-418 CE by Faxian 法顯. 3) Yiqie zhide deng jing 一切智德等經 and the Chuyao jing 出曜經 (Skt. Dharmapāda). This latter was translated by Zhu Fonian 竺佛念 in the 374. The text is closely related in content to the Dhammapada (Ch. Faju jing 法句經) but the prose explanation is Mahayanistic in character. Metadata created by: Veerle Vantomme, Violetta Maes, Junxi Sun, Changmeng Wan, Chiung-Ju Huang, and Sinae Kim.

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