Pratyutpanna Sūtra

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The short title of the early Mahāyāna sūtra whose full name is the Pratyutpanna-buddha-saṃmukha-avasthita-sāmadhi Sūtra. The work describes a trance (samādhi) which, when perfected, leads to a direct encounter with the Buddhas of the present. It shares an interest in the Pure Land and Amitābha cults with other early Mahāyāna sūtras but is more akin to the Prajñā-pāramitā Sūtra corpus in its stress on emptiness (śūnyatā) than faith-orientated sūtras like the Sukhāvatī-vyūha Sūtra. Certain features of its meditative practice are also suggestive of later Yogācāra. The text only survives in four Chinese translations, the earliest done in 179 ce by Lokakṣema, and Tibetan and Mongolian versions. The appearance of the work in China is said to mark the origins of Pure Land practice (see Pure Land School, China).

Subjects: Buddhism.

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