Sanskrit Manuscripts : Pañcarakṣā, Abhayakarīdhāraṇī, Tārābhaṭṭārikāṣṭottaraśataka, Mahākālamantradhāna

Sanskrit Manuscripts

<p style='text-align: justify;'> This beautifully illuminated multi-text manuscript is written on black paper in golden ink. It was completed in 1791 CE in Kathmandu in a <i>vihāra</i> called Hemākra and commisioned by a Vajrācārya named ‏Abhayananda (written Abhayanandra in the colophon). The manuscript contains the follwing Buddhist texts: the <i>Pañcarakṣā</i> (only the <i>dhāraṇī</i> part), the <i>Abhayakarīdhāraṇī</i> (recorded as <i>Abhayakalidhāraṇī</i> in the colophon), the <i>Tārābhaṭṭārikāṣṭottaraśataka</i> and the <i>Mahākālamantradhāna</i> (strangely added after the colophon). The <i>Pañcarakṣā</i> "Five Protections" consists of the <i>Mahāpratisarā</i>, <i>Mahāmāyūrī</i>, <i>Mahāsāhasrapramardanī</i>, <i>Mahāmantrānusāriṇī</i>, and <i>Mahāśītavatī</i>. The earliest evidence for texts grouped together as the "Five Great Dhāraṇīs" comes from Tibetan catalogues around 800 CE, but this compendium is somewhat different from the surviving Sanskrit collection, which is preserved in manuscripts dating back to the eleventh century. These scriptures include spells, enumerations of benefits and ritual instructions for use. With the course of time all of them became deified and five related goddesses emerged. It is, however, important to note that the texts themselves do not have any references to these goddesses. The other texts are little known and yet unpublished. </p>

 


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