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Luminous BlissA Religious History of Pure Land Literature in Tibet$
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Georgios T. Halkias

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780824835903

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824835903.001.0001

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The Celestial Treasures of Buddha Amitābha

The Celestial Treasures of Buddha Amitābha

(p.165) Chapter Six The Celestial Treasures of Buddha Amitābha
Luminous Bliss

Georgios T. Halkias

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter shows that the short lineage of Buddhist Treasure literature established its legitimization on the premise that its texts were concealed in the past by reputable masters and later revealed, like hidden treasures, by Buddhist adepts. Thus, the authenticity and canonical status of these discovered texts were retroactively established by their redactors and adherents, not so much as a pledge of marginality but as a reconception and reclamation of a preexisting religious heritage. To their most critical opponents, however, the revealed scriptures were pseudo-epigraphical and an anathema. The need to provide the authenticity of treasure texts was essential for establishing the “soteriological efficacy” of the Treasure tradition, and the apologists of the ancient tantras did not fail to recall Indian antecedents to the phenomenon of revelation.

Keywords:   Treasure literature, Buddhist adepts, canonical status, soteriological efficacy, revelation

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