The Enlightenment of Vairocana is a covering for two books that study a famous Buddhist scripture with given Sanskrit titles of Vairocanabhisambodhitantra or Mahavairocanasutra. The first book, by Alex Wayman, translates the second chapter, which contains the body mandala of Vairocana's Compassion, copiously using Buddhaguhya's commentary, study of some other chapters such as the final one on fire lineage, and includes much introductory material, stressing the Indo-Tibetan approach, on such topics as the Dharmadhatu and the deities of the second chapter. The second book, by Ryujun Tajima, translates the first chapter, with the scripture's theory of becoming a Buddha in one life, copiously using Subhakarasimha's commentary, summary of the remaining chapters, and includes introductory material stressing the Sino-Japanese approach, especially introducing the reader to the positions of the Shingon sect.The two books complement each other, and provide the interested reader with a veritable feast of information. Hopefully the reader will appreciate the beauty of religious message, and the efforts of the two authors to render the words of the scripture sensitively and carefully. It should be admitted that this is a profound Buddhist scripture with numerous well-crafted verses, and that it is resistent to the understanding, requiring lengthy attention for its penetration.
About the Author:
ALEX WAYMAN is well known for his previous works on Tantra. He has published just as much in the fields of non-tantric Buddhism. In April 1978 he was awarded the honorary D.Litt. at Nalanda University, India. Wayman is, since 1991, Professor Emiritus of Sanskrit, Columbia University.RYUJAN TAJIMA Ph.D., is well known for the posthumous publication in Tokyo of his French work on the two mandalas, one from the Vairocana-sutra, the other from the Tattvasamgraha-sutra. For many years he taught at Taisho University in Tokyo, and was the second Director of the Shingon Study Center there. He received the high honorary title Daisojo (Grand Abbot of Busan sect, Shingon School).