Diffusion of Buddhist Ideas in the West.......
as there were so many different teachers and as all of them claimedthat their doctrine was true, how were they to know who was tellingthe truth. The Buddha told them not to accept anything out of authority; not to accept anything because it is written in sacredshastras; not to accept anything out of reverence for their teacher; orout of hearsay; or because it sounds reasonable.We can see a striking parallel between the Buddha's own approachand approach of the science to the problem of knowledge. Observationis in a sense the key to the Buddha's method of knowledge. It isobservation that yields the theory of the Four Noble Truths. We find that not only is the method of science-observation,experiment and analysis-anticipated by the Buddha, but that some of the very specific conclusions about the nature of man and the Universethat are indicated by the latest developments in quantum physics werealso indicated by the Buddha. For instance, the importance of themind. A noted physicist not long ago has remarked that the Universe isreally something like a great thought.
states that themind precedes all things, and the mind is the maker of all mentalstates. Similarly the relativity of matter and energy, the fact that thereis no radical division between mind and matter. All these indicationsare now gradually being revealed by the latest development inscience.
Problems on the diffusion of Buddhist literature in theWest.
One of the major sources of Buddhist teachings in the Asian countriesis the abundance of Buddhist literature in the vernacular languages,which includes Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese, Thai,Sinhalese, Nepalese, Tibetan, Mongolian, Central Asian, Sanskrit, Paliand so forth. Even now most of these literatures have not beentranslated into English or other International Languages.
It was not until the advent of Sir Brian B.Hodgson (1824-1842 AD.) aBritish diplomat in Nepal, discovered a great number of
in Nepal. The existence of these before histime was unknown, and his discovery entirely revolutionized thehistory of Buddhism, as Europeans knew it in the early part of thiscentury. Copies of these works, totaling 381 folio manuscripts havebeen distributed so as to render them accessible to European scholars.Of these eighty-six manuscripts comprising 179 separate works, manywere presented to Asiatic Society of Bengal: 85 to the Royal Asiatic