Buddhism has made immense contribution and influence to Indian life and thought. Mahatma Gandhi once said, "Buddha's teachings like his heart was all-expanding and all-embracing, so it has survived his body and swept across the face of the earth".
That Buddha's words exercised a potent influence on the culture of India over the centuries cannot be denied and it is expected that the literatures in the major languages of India received inspiration in some way or the other from Buddha and his teachings in their literary and philosophical treatment.
The present volume examines the relationship of Buddhism with a particular literature and see how it reacted to Buddhism and Buddhist principles in the different periods of its history. The book also explains how Buddha's words were received in the society by common people as reflected in the literary words and how it gave rise to particular band of writers, composers and thought-leaders in different languages.
The volume is a collection of the twenty-two research papers contributed by erudite scholars in different parts of the country. The papers were presented in the National Seminar held at Santiniketan and organized jointly by Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla and VishwaBharati. This volume is bound to be an asset for those interested in the field of Buddhism.
About the Author
Narendra Kumar Dash (b.1960) is the Head of the Department of Indo-Tibetan Studies at Visva-Bharati. Dr. Dash basically is a scholar of Sanskrit and he was educated in the traditional system at Puri, Orissa. He did his Master's Degree and PhD in Sanskrit from Visva-Bharati. He has learned Tibetan from Rev. Lama Chimpa and Professor Suniti Pathak at Visva-Bharati. Dr. Dash is credited with many books and research articles and he is also associated with many research organizations.
The present volume contains the research papers presented in the National Seminar on 'Buddhism in Indian Literature' which was organized at Visva-Bharati, Santiniketan in collaboration with the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla to highlight the influence of Buddhist thoughts and religion on Indian literature, both ancient and modern. Twenty-three scholars from different parts of the country presented papers in the Seminar. The inaugural address by Swami Prabhananda Maharaj of the Ramakrishna Mission Institute of Culture, Kolkata and the keynote address by Professor Biswanath Banerjee, President, The Asiatic Society, Kolkata have also been included in this volume. Professor S.K. Pathak and Professor D.K. Barua's writings on modern Bhoti literature and pre-modern Bengali literature respectively are unique addition to this volume. We have also included considerable papers on the influence of Buddhism on Rabindra literature in particular and other Bengali literature in general written by prominent critics of the present time. Papers on the influence of Buddhism on the Oriya literature, the Sanskrit literature, the Urdu literature, the Marathi literature and Indian Poetry in English enrich this volume. Besides, two other Papers, one on 'Buddhist samgha in early Indian texts' by Professor Pranabananda Jash, and the other on 'Reecent works in Bengali on Buddhist Metaphysics and Pramana Sastras by Professor Rita Gupta have also been incorporated in this volume.
I hope that these papers would eminently enlighten the researchers in furthering their interest in Buddhist Studies.
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