Dharmapala Thangka CentreTibetan Antiques

Tibetan Sutra Pages

Tibetan books are symbols of the traditional culture of Tibet, they take a profound place in Asian art history. They are an important vehicle for the transmission and development of the Buddhist teachings. All features are skillfully carved purely and confidently, with great lines, natural volumes, and fine movements.

Classical Tibetan books are printed on both sides of long strips of paper. The sheets are placed one on top of each other. Traditional Tibetan books are not bound; the loose pages are tied between wood covers to protect the pages. Buddhist manuscripts kept in the Buddhist monasteries of the Himalayas were enclosed between wooden book-covers and wrapped in cloth.

A large part of the Tibetan texts originated in India and were originally written in Sanskrit. They came to Tibet more than 1000 years ago and were translated into Tibetan. That is why today, on the first page of these texts you will almost always find the references »rgya gar skad du« and »bod gar skad du« which means »In Indian« and »in Tibetan«. The vast majority of the original Sanskrit texts no longer exist today. If they were brought to Tibet they »survived« in their Tibetan version. Unless they fell victim to the Chinese invasion in the last century.

Rajjgir [a city in the Nalanda district of southern Bihar state] was home to India's largest Buddhist university, Alanda, founded in the 5th century, were at times over 10,000 students and 1,000 professors studied and taught.

At the beginning of the 13th century, there was a great invasion of India by the Mughal rulers from the West. The Muslim commander and usurper Muhammad bin Bakhtiyar Khalji destroyed the monastery, which was not rebuilt. In the process, nearly all unique Buddhist texts were irretrievably destroyed. Those texts that were brought to Tibet and translated before this time have been preserved. The library of the university is often compared to the library of Alexandria in ancient Egypt because of its holdings and importance at that time.

Diamond Sutra
1. Diamond Sutra
Wisdom Sutra
2. Wisdom Sutra
Framed Page
3. Framed Page
Mahakala Sutra
4. Mahakala Sutra