AVALOKITEŚVARA-DHĀRAṆĪ, name given by H. W. Bailey to a Buddhist text written in archaizing Late Khotanese (q.v.). The text was so called because it ends with a dhāraṇī (Skt. “spell, sacred formula”) that is preceded by homage to the bodhisattvas headed by the bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara. It has been published so far in transcription only (H. W. Bailey, Khotanese Texts III, Cambridge, 1956, pp. 1-13). It may be a translation from a Sanskrit original, but no source text has so far been identified. In the nineteen surviving folios the bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara is frequently addressed in the vocative. Great emphasis is laid in the text on his compassion, and it is on account of this quality in particular that he became popular not only in Tibet, China, and Japan, but also in Ceylon and elsewhere in southeast Asia.
See also R. E. Emmerick, A Guide to the Literature of Khotan, Tokyo, 1979, p. 38.
(R. E. Emmerick)
Originally Published: December 15, 1987
Last Updated: August 17, 2011
This article is available in print.
Vol. III, Fasc. 1, p. 32