The restoration work of Acarya Kamalsila's 'Madhyamakaloka was initiated in 1983 with the aim of making this important text available to scholars, researchers and students in its original Sanskrit form. Due to my having to leave Sarnath the following year to work at the Central Institute of Buddhist Studies in Leh, and subsequent duties at the CIHTS, Sarnath, as well as travel abroad for further studies, much time lapsed before this work could be finished. I am therefore very happy to present the restored Sanskrit text along with its critically edited Tibetan version to the readers.
Acarya Kamalasila went to Tibet at the invitation of the Tibetan king Trisong Detsen (khri-srong-lde'u btsan) in the second half of the 8th century C.E. At that time a philosophical controversy had arisen among the followers of Buddhism in Tibet. Many Tibetans started following Hva Shang Mahayana, a Chinese scholar who preached the doctrine of instantaneous enlightenment, which states that all karmic activities are obstacles to the attainment of supreme enlightenment. Hva Shang taught that any kind of action that is preceded by conceptual thought creates an obstacle to Buddhahood. Whether it is a golden chain or a chain made out of iron, both have the function to bind. Similarly, whether an action is virtuous or non virtuous, if it is preceded by conceptual thought it is an obstacle to enlightenment. It is like the sun being covered either by a white or a black cloud.
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Language & Literature (439)
Sacred Sites (102)
Tantric Buddhism (84)
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