The Third Annual Recitation: Summary
You are welcome to attend as much or as little of this practice as you wish. Registration is not required.
The recitation will begin at 9 a.m. on January 1, 2021, with a reading of some of the earlier portions of the sutra as context for the prayer. The organizer, Dirk Johnson, will lead this portion of the program. The final hour will conclude with dedication prayers and the chat room will remain open for discussion and socializing until everyone wishes to sign off.
- The first hour reading will be the beginning portion of Chapter 56: 56.1 – 56.71 of The Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha Sutra) as translated and freely available here: https://read.84000.co/translation/toh44-45.html
- We are planning for each recitation leader to lead recitation for one hour, but this will be informal, not rigid. If more people respond than there are one hour slots, we will shorten the slots.
- Complete readings of the prayer don’t fit neatly into time slots. We will prefer complete readings to perfect divisions of time.
- Each time-slot will consist of reading Chapter 56: 56.72-56.133 of The Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha Sutra) freely available here: https://read.84000.co/translation/toh44-45.html
- You can download and print the text for your own use if you wish. 84,000 doesn’t charge for the text. But if you are able to make a donation to 84,000 to support their work, that would be beneficial to everyone.
- The text of the prayer and of the introductory portion of Chapter 56 will be displayed during recitation.
How to Attend
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Meeting ID: 852 4970 2809
The Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha Sutra) freely available here: https://read.84000.co/translation/toh44-45.html
The text will also be presented during most of the recitation..
Samantabhadra’s Prayer and the Gaṇḍavyūha Sutra
You might be wondering what prayer we’re going to recite and where it comes from. We’ll try to answer that here.
The Wider Context: The Buddhāvataṃsaka (A Multitude of Buddhas) Sūtra
Buddhāvataṃsaka Sūtra or Multitude of Buddhas Sutra, generally shortened to the Avataṃsaka Sūtra is best known to speakers of English as The Flower Ornament Sutra in the 1,600 page translation from the Chines by Thomas Cleary. Cleary’s translation continues to be the only English translation of the entire Avataṃsaka.
The Stem Array: Final Chapter of A Multitude of Buddhas
The Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha Sutra) is the forty-fifth and final chapter of A Multitude of Buddhas (The Avataṃsaka Sutra). If this sounds complicated, you’re right. It is. But it’s also simple. There’s a gigantic sutra, very influential. The forty-fifth chapter of the gigantic sutra is also a gigantic sutra. This gigantic sutra, the Stem Array, has fifty-six chapters. See? Simple.
By the way, The Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha) is the inspiration behind the magnificent 8th – 9th CE Borobudur Temple in Indonesia. If you don’t know anything about the Borobudur, you can read about it on the Unesco website.
The Samantabhadra Chapter: Final Chapter of The Stem Array
We have nearly zeroed in on our recitation text. The Samantabhadra Chapter is the fifty-sixth and final chapter of the Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha). In this chapter, the central figure of the entire Stem Array, Sudhana, after meeting a multitude of spiritual friends finally meets and has a vision of Samantabhadra. This is the portion of the text that we will read at 9 a.m. PST on January 1, 2022, to initiate our recitation in order to give the full context of the prayer that Samantabhadra will give to Sudhana. This portion of our practice is comprised of lines 56.1 – 56.71 of The Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha Sutra) as translated and freely available here: https://read.84000.co/translation/toh44-45.html
Samantabhadra’s Prayer of Good Conduct: The Concluding Verses of All of the Above
Our recitation text is the culmination of both the Multitude of Buddhas and the Stem Array. Widely known as “The King of Prayers”, it has been translated many times into English and is one of the most widely recited texts by all schools of Tibetan Buddhism. The prayer consists of verses 72-56.133 of The Stem Array (Gaṇḍavyūha Sutra) freely available here: https://read.84000.co/translation/toh44-45.html