English Translation of 大安般守意經 (Ekottara Ãgama, T602)

Hi … Is there any link of any website that I could read The T602 Da An Ban Shou Yi Jing 大安般守意經 in Ekottara Ãgama? Thanks

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You can find it in the Taisho Canon here:


Thank you, Bhante. :pray::pray::pray:


Are then any English translations available? Especially of the recently discovered alternate version?

There are no translations that I’m aware of. But there have been several papers published analyzing the text. The most helpful will probably be the one by Shi Guo Huei, which lays out the contents and does translate some parts:

Additionally, the article mentions a meditation text drawing from T 602, as Zuochan Sanmei Jing. This meditation manual by Kumarajiva has been translated into English. It draws upon T 602 and other Sarvastivada sources in its treatment of mindfulness of breathing.

For anyone reading this who is not familiar with T 602, Da Anban Shouyi Jing, it is the first Buddhist meditation manual provided to China (2nd century CE). The translator was the Parthian monk An Shigao. The title is something like The Great Classic on Mindfulness of Breathing. It was enormously popular in the first few centuries and there were multiple commentaries. It became so popular that the commentaries became jumbled with the text. So the extant text of T 602 in the Taisho canon, and in CBETA, is known to be a corrupt text.

Then randomly in 1999, an original copy of Da Anban Shouyi Jing, untouched by commentary, was found in a Shingon Buddhist temple in Japan. The rediscovered text has been analyzed from several different angles since then. The text is mostly derived originally from the Yogacarabhumi of Samgharaksa, but then augmented with things more typical of the Mahavibhasa tradition. In other words, it’s a fusion of Sarvativadin materials.


Thanks for the link & explanation. I am now in the process of validating all the Teaching from both side.

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Oh my goodness llt! Thanks you so much for your brilliant, concise, informative and well linked reply!! You are a champion!!!


Was there ever really an original, underlying substratum to T602? Or, was it always all just a lot of commentary?


I bet there is. I haven’t found but I think there is. Anyway, it is just a mix up between original sutra translation, personal opinions & biographies. And the most important both sects have their own Anapanasati Sutta.

And if not. there is one in SA.801, if I not wrong.

The Yogacarabhumi of Samgharaksa was translated in full by Dharmaraksa in the 3rd century, as Xiuxing Daodi Jing 修行道地經 (T 606). That is probably the closest we can get to a hypothetical original “complete” original as it would have existed in India.

The text that An Shigao produced had contents from the Yogacarabhumi of Samgharaksa, but also some contents from the Sarvastivada abhidharma tradition. So in that sense, even without the lines of commentary mixed in, the text was at least edited and expanded by An Shigao.

For example, early Darstantika Sarvastivada tradition had mindfulness of breathing with four methods. But in the meditation tradition of the abhidharmists, these had been expanded to six methods. An Shigao took the text of the Darstantika tradition and expanded it to include the extra two methods of the abhidharmic tradition. So his role was synthesizing the methods of these two Sarvastivada traditions. (Eventually the six methods became universal among the Sarvastivadins.)

As far as I know, the most detailed treatments of mindfulness of breathing are in two sources:

  1. The Yogacarabhumi of Buddhasena, AKA, Dharmatrāta Dhyāna Sūtra 達摩多羅禪經 (T 618). This has a very detailed account of mindfulness of breathing, and is the manual of the two 4th-century teachers Buddhasena and Dharmatrata. These were purportedly the most well-known dhyana teachers in their time. The lineage of yogic masters in this text was tweaked slightly and used as the lineage for Chan/Zen. A rough translation was produced some years ago: An English translation of the Dharmatrāta-Dhyāna Sūtra.

  2. The Abhidharma Mahavibhasa Sastra 阿毘達磨大毘婆沙論 (T 1545). This is sort of the Sarvastivadin encyclopedic technical work par excellence. It has a large amount of information about mindfulness of breathing and interpretations of all the steps. This text has not yet been translated into English. It would be several thousand pages, so it’s one of the big texts.