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Nord-Asie 6 | 2018
Les oiseaux ne laissent pas de trace dans le ciel

Images de la nature dans la poésie bouddhique indo-tibétaine
Les oiseaux ne laissent pas de trace dans le ciel
Danièle Masset
ISBN 979-10-92565-31-7

While nature may not feature prominently in Buddhist literature, it appears in a wide variety of forms in poetic works, and the present volume adopts a transversal approach to the topic as it is treated in an Indo-Tibetan context. The author examines a corpus of literature spanning two millennia, from the verses of the Pāli Canon to the songs of Tibetan masters such as Milarepa. Nature, as it features in this body of writing, is seen through the prism of religious and literary conventions, but it also constitutes a mirror of the world and of the doctrine. It has inspired numerous images that have been faithfully transmitted over the course of time, sometimes with significant variations. The study of these transformations offers an opportunity to highlight the remarkable continuity that links the Indian and Tibetan traditions, and also to reveal or to rediscover a long-vanished relationship with nature, a complicity founded on a secret that we have lost.

Danièle Masset studies Indian and Tibetan Buddhist texts from a comparative and literary perspective. Her publications include Stances des Thera (Pali Text Society, 2011) and Stances des Therī (Pali Text Society, 2005), the first French translations of the Theragāthā and the Therīgāthā, poems from the Pāli canon attributed to exemplary monks and nuns from the earliest days of Buddhism.

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