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Sanskrit manuscripts from Tibet
This volume is a facsimile edition of two ancient Sanskrit manuscripts from Tibet, which were actually used by Indian acaryas and Tibetan lotsavas for translation into Tibetan. They are valuble for the comments of the lotsavas written in the cursive Tibetan script dbu.med on the palmeaves themselves. The two texts are: (i) Vimalaprabha commentary on the Kalacakra-tantra, and (ii) Pancaraksa. The script of the manuscript of Vimalaprabha shows that it was written in Magadha and belongs to the early 11th century. It is the earliest manuscript of the Vimalaprabha. Jagannath Upadhyaya, Vrajavallabh Dvivedi and S.S. Bahulkar edited the commentary and original Tantra in 1986-1994 from the Central Institute of Higher Tibetan Studies, Sarnath. They used six manuscripts, three of them in Devanagari script, two in Newari script, and one in old Bengali script. The present manuscript is the oldest of them, and merits a new edition. The five texts of the PANCARAKSA have been treated as separate titles in the Kanjur (Toh. 558, 559, 561, 562, 563). They were translated by Ye.ses.sde with the help of Silendrabodhi, Jnanasiddhi, Sakyaprabha, Jinamitra and Danasila, during the reign of Ral.pal.can who ruled from 817 to 836. It was a period of great literary activity, when a common terminology was developed by a royal commission with eminent Indian and Tibetan scholars for the translation of complex philosophic ideas. The outcome of this historic effort was the Mahavyutpatti, which is an astounding linguistic work of transforming a primal Tibetan language into a valid literary language of Classical sophistication. The Sanskrit manuscript of the Five Raksa texts reproduced here should go back to the early ninth century. It is a glorious symbol of the foundations of the literary heritage of Tibet.
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