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Mandala et rituel de confession à Dunhuang

Abstract : This is a study of several Dunhuang manuscripts connected with mandalas. A link is established between several sketches of unfinished mandalas and an apocryphal Tantra called Jingangjun jing &ЖШШ , which is an imitation of the famous Jingangding jing ййШМ, a Chinese translation of the Vajrašekhara-sutra, or Diamond Pointed Sutra, supposed to be the basis of the one of the two great mandalas in the Chinese- Japanese tradition, the Vajradhâtu-mandala. The Dunhuang apocryphal Tantra also claims to have been translated into Chinese by Amoghavajra (VIIIe s.), the translator of the Jingangding jing. The Tantras (P. 3913 in the Paris collection, S. 2144 V° in the London collection and dong 74 in Beijing collection) and sketches of andalas (P. 2012 in the Paris collection) seem to belong to the same ritualistic tradition. The sketches fit well with some of the descriptions of mandalas in the Tantra and the Tantra supplies ritual procedure for drawing the mandalas. Ritualized confession is the basis of these mandalas. Preliminary rites, such as jingdi (purify ritual place), jingjie (purify ritual enclosure), jiejie (delimit ritual enclosure), chanhui (confession), and primordial elements (dhàtu) like feng (wind), shui (water), kong (space), are now the names of Bodhisattvas. The four immeasurable thoughts, dad (great benevolent), dabei (great compassion), daxi (great joy), dashe (great equanimity), also become divine protectors, or Vajrasattvas. These new Bodhisattvas and Vajrasattvas are assigned a place in the mandalas. These Dunhuang mandalas are akin to the mandalas known from Indian, Tibetan and Chinese canonical sources, but with specific modifications. They belong to a local tantric tradition, different from the ones known from India and Tibet and from Japan, which borrowed it from China.
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Liying Kuo. Mandala et rituel de confession à Dunhuang. Bulletin de l'Ecole française d'Extrême-Orient, EFEO, 1998, 85 (1), pp.227-256. ⟨10.3406/befeo.1998.2550⟩. ⟨halshs-02515001⟩

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