Tibetan text links

I noticed the other day that there are some Tibetan texts with parallels to a number of text collections in SC. That’s a cool thing to have. I’m wondering if you’ve considered adding links to translations in English of available texts in 84000. (And what about adding Toh numbers for cross-referencing purposes?)


Parallel links are always from/to original texts in the original language only, never to the translations. Translations are from various sources not always exactly from the same version of the texts and that would be difficult to implement.

For the Pali we will be able to do this to the English and in the future any translations that are made on our own translation software. This will make sure that there is consistency between the numbering systems of all texts and translations.

We hope in the future to add more Tibetan texts but they are rather complicated. Ven. Dhammadinna in Taiwan is working on these as well as on an English translation. We have lists of parallels with these texts but cannot include them until the texts themselves are included.


I hope there could be some way to connect the two projects. It would be useful for me to be able to read the Tibetan texts in SC in translation somewhere else. I don’t have the technical knowledge to understand the difficulties involved.


I check the 84000 project from time to time. Last time I checked they had no relevant translations that I know of, except the Mulasarvastivada Vinaya, for which we are still waiting on the completion of third-party research.

If there’s anything you think may be relevant, please post it here and we’ll have a look at it. to be clear, “relevant” means pertaining to the early texts, for which the main sources in Tibetan are the Vinaya, the Upayika, and a smallish number of independent sutras.


Here’s one that I find interesting:

(SN 56.11 -> Toh 337, aka. D 31)

And another:

(SN 45.2 -> Toh 300, aka. D 300)


In the Sūtra of the Wheel of the Dharma Toh 337 aka D 31, what does it mean when the deities of the Brahmā realm say:

Friends, in the Deer Park at Ṛṣivadana by Vārāṇasī, the Blessed One has turned the wheel of Dharma in three phases with twelve aspects. He has turned the wheel of Dharma in a way that no mendicant or brahmin, and no god, māra, or Brahmā in the world could ever do in accord with the Dharma. He has done so for the benefit of many beings, for the happiness of many beings, out of love for the world, and for the welfare, benefit, and happiness of gods and humans. Hence, the gods will flourish and the demigods will be on the wane.

Are these three phases the 3 turnings of the wheel as synthesized by Yogācāra (śrāvaka, bodhisattva, vajrayāna) or is this in reference to something else? I assume the 12 aspects are the 12 nidānāni?

Very interesting to see the triyāna pop up in this Tibetic scripture, if indeed that is what it is.

1 Like

From the footnotes earlier up that I missed:

The three phases refer to the three stages of (1) identifying the four truths, (2) understanding how to relate to each of the four truths, and (3) knowing that the respective goals of the four truths have been accomplished. When these three stages are applied to each of the four truths, there are twelve aspects in all. For a classical explanation of this enumeration by Haribhadra (eighth cent.), see Sparham 2008, p. 264. See also Anderson 1999, p. 70. Note that these twelve aspects are unrelated to the alternative enumeration of sixteen aspects associated with the four truths (four for each truth). The sixteen aspects counteract sixteen incorrect views associated with the four truths. On the sixteen aspects, see Buswell 2013, p. 304-305. For a classical account by Candrakīrti (c. 570-650 ᴄᴇ), see May 1959, p. 212-216.


And these 12 modes are also there in the Pali… FYI. :sunglasses:


Perhaps the Anityatāsūtra ( མི་རྟག་པ་ཉིད་ཀྱི་མདོ། )? I don’t know of parallels, but the sutta strikes me as early or derived from early sources.


@Robbie Maybe these are related…


Not sure. The Tibetan text specifically mentions good health, prosperity, youth, and life. These are not mentioned in SN 22.45 or SN 36.9.

That’s true. There will be differences.

Thanks, well spotted. @Aminah, can you make a ticket (or add to an existing ticket) to add these and potentially other recent translations from 84000? Thanks!

Just to confirm the answer you gave yourself, these refer to the three phases of understanding the four noble truths: recognition of the truths, the task to be performed relevant to each truth, and the completion of the task. These are a common feature of many versions of the Dhammacakka, and are so well known in the traditions that they are frequently referred to by shorthand. They have nothing to do with the Triyana.


The three phases of understanding the four noble truths (i.e. the four truths in each way) in the Tibetan text are also similar to the Chinese SA 379 (see Choong Mun-keat, 2000. The Fundamental Teachings of Early Buddhism, p. 237). But this is different sequence from the Pali version SN 56.11, which indicates each truth in three ways.

Kind regards,


:+1: :ticket: