Treasury of Abhidharma

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The Treasury of Abhidharma (Skt. Abhidharmakośa; Tib. ཆོས་མངོན་པའི་མཛོད་, Ngön Pa Dzö; Wyl. chos mngon pa'i mdzod) was composed by Vasubandhu, one of the 'Six Ornaments', the greatest Buddhist authorities of Ancient India. Abhidharmakosha is a complete and systematic account of the Abhidharma, and is the peak of scholarship in the Fundamental Vehicle. If this text presents the different topics from the Vaibhashika point of view, Vasubandhu also wrote an autocommentary, the Auto-Commentary on the Treasury of Abhidharma (Skt. Abhidharmakośa-Bhāṣya), which is based on the Sautrantika view.

It is included among the so-called "Thirteen great texts", which form the core of the curriculum in most shedras and on which Khenpo Shenga provided commentaries.


Outline

The text is divided into eight topics:

  1. The elements (Skt. dhātu)
  2. The faculties (Skt. indriya)
  3. The world (Skt. loka)
  4. Actions (Skt. karma)
  5. 'Subtle developers' (Skt. anuśaya) (i.e. negative emotions)
  6. The path and the individual (Skt. mārgaprahāṇa)
  7. Wisdom (Skt. jñāna)
  8. Meditative equipoise (Skt. samāpatti)

Commentaries

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Indian

  • Yashomitra, Abhidharmakośaṭīkā (ཆོས་མངོན་པའི་མཛོད་ཀྱི་འགྲེལ་བཤད་, chos mngon pa'i mdzod kyi 'grel bshad)

Tibetan

The following are among the best known Tibetan commentaries on the Abhidharmakosha:

  • Chim Jampé Yang, Ornament of Abhidharma (མངོན་པའི་རྒྱན་, mngon pa'i rgyan)
  • Gendün Drup (1391–1474) Illuminating the Path to Liberation (ཐར་ལམ་གསལ་བྱེད་, thar lam gsal byed)
  • Rongtön Sheja Kunrig, Thoroughly Illuminating What Can be Known (ཤེས་བྱ་རབ་གསལ་, shes bya rab gsal)
  • Mipham Rinpoche, རིན་པོ་ཆེའི་དོ་ཤལ་བློ་གསལ་དགྱེས་པའི་མགུལ་རྒྱན་, rin po che'i do shal blo gsal dgyes pa'i mgul rgyan
  • Jamyang Loter Wangpo, A Lamp Illuminating Vasubandhu's Intention (དབྱིག་གཉེན་དགོངས་པ་གསལ་བའི་སྒྲོན་མེ་, dbyig gnyen dgongs pa gsal ba'i sgron me)
  • Khenpo Shenga, A Mirror for What Can be Known (ཤེས་བྱའི་མེ་ལོང་, shes bya'i me long)

Translations

Tibetan

English

  • Abhidharmakosabhasyam of Vasubandhu, translated by Leo M. Pruden, Asian Humanities Press, Berkeley 1990 (Translated into English from the French translation of Louis de La Vallé Poussin, L'Abhidharmakośa de Vasubandhu, Institut belge des hautes études chinoises, Bruxelles, 1971)

French

  • Louis de La Vallé Poussin, L'Abhidharmakośa de Vasubandhu, available for free download from Archive.org

Further Reading

  • James Duerlinger, Indian Buddhist theories of persons: Vasubandhu's "Refutation of the theory of a self", Routledge, 2003

Internal Links

External Links