Pali Language and Literature — A Systematic Survey and Historical Study (2 vols. Set)
In Pali is preserved the Buddhist canon. Which, considered as “the most authentic form of Buddhavacana”, constitutes the very matrix of its 2500-year-long Theravada tradition. A refined, widely-spoken language of the early Middle Indic (Indo-Aryan) stage: about bc 600-200, Pali has also left, for posterity, a splendid legacy of “secular” literature that captures contemporary socio-cultural milieus not only of India, but of Myanmar, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and other neighbouring countries as well. Here is, in two volumes, a fascinating, well-knit study of the Pali language, and also of its literature: both canonical and non-canonical. Beginning with a systematic description of the language, its historical evolution, phonology and major grammatical categories, VOLUME 1 takes an indepth, critical look at the canonical Pali texts — all the three Pitakas : the three “baskets” (collections): the Vinaya, Sutta and Abhidhamma, which, among other things, embody Sakyamuni’s own universal message, the writings of his immediate monastic followers/disciples, the basic principles of shula (ethical behaviour), the disciplinary codes for the sangha and, above all, the Theravada philosophy in its truly pristine frame. VOLUME 2 surveys nearly the whole variety of Non-canonical Pali Literature covering creative writings, manuals, and as many as 25 chronicles: from Sri Lanka, Myanmar, and Thailand — besides numerous commentaries of the old-world scholars, like Buddhadatta, Buddhaghosa, and Dhammapala. In focus here are also a range of treatises on law, grammar, lexicography, and poetics including rhetorics and metrics. A painstakingly documented work with a comprehensive index, involving years of Dr. Hazra’s research effort, this book is invaluable to the scholars/researchers of Buddhist Studies, specially of Theravada Buddhism, Pali language and Pali literature.
The series focuses on *Buddhism, the Dhamma *Buddhist Teachings *Philosophy/Metaphysics *The Ancient Schools: Theravada (Hinayana), Sarvastivada, Sautrantika, Mahisasaka and Vinaya (Lu/Ritsu) * The Transitional Schools: Mahasanghika, Lokottaravada, Vatsiputriya, Satyasiddhi *Canonical Texts *Mahayana & the Mahayana Schools like, for instance, Madhyamika Yogacara, Dhyana (Ch’an/Zen) *Buddhist Tantrism *Doctrine *Logic *Psychology *Esoterism * Tibetan Buddhism: History, Sects, Shingon *Buddhist Ethics *Monastic Institutions *Evolution of the Sanghas and Their Organization *Buddhist Ceremonies & Festivals *Popular Traditions *Rites & Rituals *Symbolism & Iconography *Buddhist Architecture: Monasteries, Stupas, Caves and Other relevant Themes.