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The Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra
Last and most impressive teachings of the Buddha about Reality and the True Self

by The Buddha

Pages: 438
Book size: 7.75 X 10

Translated into English by Kosho Yamamoto
Edited, revised and copyright by Dr. Tony Page


This sutra is the study of what can be called "Nirvana Sutra Buddhism" or "Tathagatagarbha Buddhism". It is a very positive, balanced, faith-promoting and spiritually affirmative manifestation of Buddhism, which recognises the hidden reality of the unconditioned, egoless Buddha-Self in all beings. That Self of the Buddha is a mystery, beyond the reach and grasp of the samsaric intellect: while the Buddha-Self is real, it is certainly not comparable to our worldly, selfish self (ego) and cannot truly be captured within the net of words or concepts. Yet it is the only enduring Truth that can ever be found. This sutra leads us to the Ultimate Truth and indicate the Path to tread for an Awakening into Reality's presence, which is all-pervading and eternal. That eternally present Truth is the sole genuine Reality.


"You, monks, should not thus cultivate the notion of impermanence, suffering and non-Self, the notion of impurity and so forth, deeming them to be the true meaning of the Dharma, as those people searching in a pool for a radiant gem did, each thinking that bits of brick, stones, grass and gravel were the jewel. You should train yourselves well in efficacious means. In every situation, constantly meditate upon the idea of the Self, the idea of the Eternal, the Bliss, and the Pure ... Those who, desirous of attaining Reality, meditatatively cultivate these ideas, namely, the ideas of the Self, the Eternal, the Bliss, and the Pure, will skilfully bring forth the jewel, just like that wise person who obtained the genuine, priceless gem, rather than worthless detritus misperceived as the real thing."

- The Buddha, Chapter Three, The Mahayana Mahaparinirvana Sutra



Chapter One: Introductory
Chapter Two: On Cunda
Chapter Three: On Grief
Chapter Four: On Long Life
Chapter Five: On the Adamantine Body
Chapter Six: On the Virtue of the Name
Chapter Seven: On the Four Aspects
Chapter Eight: On the Four Dependables
Chapter Nine: On Wrong and Right
Chapter Ten: On the Four Truths
Chapter Eleven: On the Four Inversions
Chapter Twelve: On the Nature of the Tathagata
Chapter Thirteen: On Letters
Chapter Fourteen: On the Parable of the Birds
Chapter Fifteen: On the Parable of the Moon
Chapter Sixteen: On the Bodhisattva
Chapter Seventeen: On the Questions Raised by the Crowd
Chapter Eighteen: On Actual Illness
Chapter Nineteen: On Holy Actions
Chapter Twenty: On Holy Actions
Chapter Twenty-One: On Pure Actions
Chapter Twenty-Two: On Pure Actions
Chapter Twenty-Three: On Pure Actions
Chapter Twenty-Four: On Pure Actions
Chapter Twenty-Five: On Pure Actions
Chapter Twenty-Six: On the Action of the Child
Chapter Twenty-Seven: Bodhisattva Highly-Virtuous King
Chapter Twenty-Eight: Bodhisattva Highly-Virtuous King
Chapter Twenty-Nine: Bodhisattva Highly-Virtuous King
Chapter Thirty: Bodhisattva Highly-Virtuous King
Chapter Thirty-One: Bodhisattva Highly-Virtuous King
Chapter Thirty-Two: Bodhisattva Highly-Virtuous King
Chapter Thirty-Three: On Bodhisattva Lion's Roar
Chapter Thirty-Four: On Bodhisattva Lion's Roar
Chapter Thirty-Five: On Bodhisattva Lion's Roar
Chapter Thirty-Six: On Bodhisattva Lion's Roar
Chapter Thirty-Seven: On Bodhisattva Lion's Roar
Chapter Thirty-Eight: On Bodhisattva Lion's Roar
Chapter Thirty-Nine: On Bodhisattva Lion's Roar
Chapter Forty: On Bodhisattva Kasyapa
Chapter Forty-One: On Bodhisattva Kasyapa
Chapter Forty-Two: On Bodhisattva Kasyapa
Chapter Forty-Three: On Bodhisattva Kasyapa
Chapter Forty-Four: On Bodhisattva Kasyapa
Chapter Forty-Five: On Kaundinya
Chapter Forty-Six: On Kaundinya


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