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Wien2009 (2)

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How the philosophy and spirituality of Theravada Buddhism is betrayed by the translation of the Pali original in English. Every capital concept is just distorted by the translation.

How the philosophy and spirituality of Theravada Buddhism is betrayed by the translation of the Pali original in English. Every capital concept is just distorted by the translation.

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  • 1. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 1 The Dhammapada Wien, Austria July 6-9, 2009 THE BETRAYAL OF BUDDHIST CONCEPTS IN ENGLISH, EKNATH EASWARAN’S «TRANSLATION» Dr Jacques COULARDEAU dondaine@orange.fr
  • 2. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 2 Table of Contents 3. Verse 277 Aniccā 4. Verse 278 Dukkhā 5. Verse 279 Anattā 6. The radical ternary tensor of Buddhism 7. Another reversal: beyond dhamma 8. The states of being, becoming, having 9. Transfer of « ownership »: give versus take 10.Preterite Participle in -tvā (verses 294-295) 11.Syncretic syntax (Verse 364) 12.Representation 13.Stylistics: Verses 212- 216 (A) 14.Stylistics: Verses 212- 216 (B)
  • 3. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 3 Verse 277 Sabbe sa khārā aniccā’tiṅ yadā paññāya passati Atha nibbindati dukkhe esa maggo visuddhiyā Narada ’s translation: TRANSIENT ARE CONDITIONED THINGS Transient are all conditioned things: [Note on “sa khārā”]ṅ When this, with wisdom, one discerns, Then is one disgusted with ill; [Note on “dukkhe”, plural accusative of “dukkha”] This is the path to purity. Eknath Easwaran ’s translation: All created things are transitory; Those who realize this are free from suffering. This is the path that leads to pure wisdom.
  • 4. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 4 Verse 278 Sabbe sa khārā dukkhā’tiṅ yadā paññāya passati Atha nibbindati dukkhe esa maggo visuddhiyā Narada ’s translation: SORROWFUL ARE ALL CONDITIONED THINGS Sorrowful are all conditioned things: When this , with wisdom, one discerns, Then is one disgusted with ill; This is the path of purity. Eknath Easwaran ’s translation: All created beings are involved in sorrow; Those who realize this are freed from suffering. This is the path that leads to pure wisdom.
  • 5. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 5 Verse 279 Sabbe dhammā anattā’ti yadā paññāya passati Atha nibbindati dukkhe esa maggo visuddhiyā Narada ’s translation: EVERYTHING IS SOULLESS All dhammas are without a soul: [Note on “aniccā”, “dukkhā”, “anattā”, “sa khārā” andṅ “dhamma”] When this, with wisdom, one discerns, Then is one disgusted with ill; This is the path to purity. Eknath Easwaran ’s translation: All states are without self; Those who realize this are freed from suffering. This is the path that leads to pure wisdom.
  • 6. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 6 The radical ternary (« binary ») tensor of Buddhism The Natural state The searching mind Nibbāna vajja: wrong belief pāpa: evil lobha: attachment dosa: ill will (hatred) moha; delusion the three immoral roots ta hā: craving, attachmentṇ kāmata hā: craving for sensuous pleasuresṇ bhavata hā: craving for rebirthṇ vibhavata hā: craving for no rebirthṇ rāga: lust (Narada, Easwaran) dosa: hate (Narada, Easwaran) moha: delusion (N) infatuation (E) ta hā: craving (N) greed (E)ṇ kāmata hā: craving for sensuous pleasuresṇ rūpata hā: craving for the Realms of Formsṇṇ arūpata hā: craving for the Formless Realmsṇ avajja: right belief alobha: generosity adosa: goodwill (loving kindness) amoha: wisdom the three Ø moral roots Tisarana: The three refuges: Buddha: teacher Dhamma: teaching Sangha: taught The Triple Gem sīla: morality gu a: virtueṇ paññā: wisdom puñña: merit dhamma : righteousness the five powers of Buddha sukha: happiness, bliss LINGUISTICALLY POSITIVE ELEMENTS > 0 LINGUISTICALLY NEGATIVE ELEMENTS < 0 BUT LINGUISTIVALLY POSITIVE REFUGES (THOUGH A REFUGE IS THE NEGATION OF THE HOSTILE OUTSIDE WORLD) > 0 LINGUISTICALLY POSITIVE ELEMENTS > 0
  • 7. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 7 Another reversal: beyond dhamma verses 242-248. The first element is “pāpakā dhammā”. Adjective nominative plural + nominative plural noun. verse 248 “pāpadhammā asaññatā Mā ta lobho adhammo ca”ṁ Note this time the compound “pāpadhammā”, the evil universe (all things conditioned, plural), which is quite representative of the first element of the ternary tensor we spoke of before; “asaññatā”: negative prefix a- + “saññatā”, plural nominative, past participle of “saŋ” + “yam”, “drawn together”, “restrained”. “Mā”: prohibition particle. “ta ”: accusative of demonstrativeṁ “lobho adhammo ca”: nominative of “lobha”, “greed” + nominative of “adhamma” [negative prefix a- + “dhamma”, “le savoir”] “haine” + coordinator. Narada’s translation is: “’Not easy of restraint are evil things’. Let not greed and wickedness…” Eknath Easwaran’s translation is: “Any indiscipline brings evil in its wake. Know this, and do not let greed and vice …”
  • 8. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 8 The states of being, becoming and having • “Balavā puriso” • “puriso balavā” • “puriso balavā hoti” • “purisassa balo hoti” • “balasampanno puriso” Phrase equivalences • 18) a) “Balavā puriso” 'strong man' ≡ “parisassa balo hoti” 'the man has strength' ≡ “balasampanno puriso” 'a man possessing strength' • 18) b) “Puriso balavā” 'the man [is] strong' ≡ “puriso balavā hoti” 'the man is strong' (Elizarenkova, 1976, 137)
  • 9. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 9 Transfer of « ownership »: give vs take • “Tassa (ratanāni) bhavanti” • “so (ratana)pati” • “Purisassa dadāti” • puriso ādadāti” • verse 249 “dadāti” “Dadāti ve yathāsaddhaṁ yathāpasādana jano”ṁ • verses 356-359 “Tasmā hi vītarāgesu dinna hoti mahapphala .”ṁ ṁ • “dinna ”: accusative of past participle of “dadāti”, with allṁ meanings of “dadāti”, especially that of “giving alms”.
  • 10. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 10 The “preterite participle” or “gerund” in –tvā (Verses 294-295) “Mātara pitara hantvāṁ ṁ Rājāno dve ca khattiye Ra ha sānucara hantvāṭṭ ṁ ṁ Anīgho yāti brāhma o.ṇ Mātara pitara hantvāṁ ṁ Rājāno dve ca sottiye Veyyagghapañcama hantvāṁ Anīgho yāti brāhma o.ṇ Narada’s translation: “Having slain mother (craving) and father (conceit) and two warrior kings (views based on eternalism and nihilism), and having destroyed a country (sense-avenues and sense-objects) together with its revenue officer (attachment), ungrieving goes the Brāhmana (Arahant). Having slain mother and father and two Brahmin kings, and having destroyed the perilous path (hindrances), ungrieving goes the Brāhmana (Arahant).” Eknath Easwaran’s translation: “Kill mother lust and father self-will, kill the kings of carnal passions, and you will be freed from sin. The true Brahmin has killed mother lust and father self-will; he has killed the kings of carnal passions, and the ego that obstructs him on the path . He is freed from sin.”
  • 11. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 11 Syncretic Syntax: verse 364 Dhammārāmo dhammarato dhamma anuvicintayaṁ ṁ Dhamma anussara bhikkhuṁ ṁ Saddhammā na parihāyati. Narada’s translation: “That bhikkhu who dwells in the Dhamma, who delights in the Dhamma, who meditates on the Dhamma, who well remembers the Dhamma, does not fall away from the sublime Dhamma.” Eknath Easwaran’s translation: “He is a true bhikkhu who follows the dharma, meditates on the dharma, rejoices in the dharma, and therefore never falls away from the dharma.”
  • 12. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 12 Representation VERB: na parihāyati SUBJECT: bhikkhu Apposed subject 1: Dhammārāmo Apposed subject 2: dhammarato Object 1: double accusative: dhamma anuvicintayaṁ ṁ Object 2: double accusative: Dhamma anussaraṁ ṁ Predicative complement: Saddhammā
  • 13. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 13 Stylistics: Verses 212-216 (A) Piyato jāyati soko piyato jāyati bhayaṁ Piyato vippamuttassa natthi soko kuto bhaya .ṁ Pemato jāyati soko pemato jāyati bhayaṁ Pemato vippamuttassa natthi soko kuto bhaya .ṁ Ratiya jāyati soko ratiyā jāyati bhayaṁ Ratiyā vippamuttassa natthi soko kuto bhaya .ṁ Narada’s translation: “From endearment springs grief, from endearment springs fear; for him who is wholly free from endearment there is no grief, much less fear. From affection springs grief, from affection springs fear; for him who is wholly free from affection there is no grief, much less fear. From attachment springs grief, from attachment springs fear; for him who is wholly free from attachment there is no grief, much less fear.” Eknath Easwaran’s translation: “Selfish attachment brings suffering; selfish attachment brings fear. Be detached, and you will be free from suffering and fear. Selfish bonds cause grief; selfish bonds cause fear. Be unselfish, and you will be free from grief and fear. Selfish enjoyments lead to frustration; selfish enjoyments lead to fear? Be unselfish, and you will be free from frustration and fear.”
  • 14. 07/16/14 Wien, July 6-9, 2009, Spirituality 14 Stylistics: Verses 212-216 (B) Kāmato jāyati soko kāmato jāyati bhayaṁ Kāmato vippamuttassa natthi soko kuto bhaya .ṁ Ta hāya jāyati sokoṇ ta hāya jāyati bhayaṇ ṁ Ta hāya vippamuttassaṇ natthi soko kuto bhaya .ṁ Narada’s translation: “From lust springs grief, from lust springs fear; for him who is wholly free from lust there is no grief, much less fear. From craving springs grief, from craving springs fear; for him who is wholly free from craving there is no grief, much less fear.” Eknath Easwaran’s translation: “Selfish desires give rise to anxiety; selfish desires give rise to fear. Be unselfish, and you will be free from anxiety and fear. Craving brings pain; craving brings fear. Don’t yield to cravings, and you will be free from pain and fear.”

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