Jump to content
Learn Chinese in China

Sign in to follow this  

Deceptively confusing passage

Recommended Posts


Hi all,


I am reading through a mediaeval Buddhist text by 湛然 called the "法華五百問論". Said text is a critique of an earlier Buddhist commentary by 窺基 known as the "法華玄贊". 窺基's text is a commentary on the 妙法蓮華經. 


We have worked our way through quite a lot of the text, but one particular passage from the opening section still causes some confusion. The section in question is the following:


"問:釋一經,文前幾門? 答:開為六門:一、敘經緣起之意;二、明宗旨;三、明經品得 名;四、明品廢立;五、彰品次第;六、釋經本文。

今意:謂之不然。除釋本文,餘之五門,初文略明緣起可爾;餘三 明品在無,非經骨格;第二宗旨未曉如何。容子陳疑,方知遠旨;曾聞 有用名體、宗、用、教、相等五,稍似得於此經旨歸。"


As you can see, the section is fairly straightforward, and has not properly caused any great issue. The 'non-bolded' text is 窺基, and the bolded text is 湛然. 


However, the underlined piece from 湛然's remarks are rather confusing to my mind (that is: 容子陳疑,方知遠旨). It seems to my mind parsable in a number of rather different ways. The first four characters in particular. The entire section is fairly simple, and so I feel like I'm missing the obvious and simple meaning here. Nevertheless, I've looked at the passage far too many times now, and it looks stranger each time I do.


I'm sure the passage is not a difficult one, and I have no doubt it will expose my lack  of expertise. Nevertheless, I'd be very grateful if any had any comments or reading/translation suggestions. 


Thank you for your time,





Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
Site Sponsors:
Pleco for iPhone / Android iPhone & Android Chinese dictionary: camera & hand- writing input, flashcards, audio.
Study Chinese in Kunming 1-1 classes, qualified teachers and unique teaching methods in the Spring City.
Learn Chinese Characters Learn 2289 Chinese Characters in 90 Days with a Unique Flash Card System.
Hacking Chinese Tips and strategies for how to learn Chinese more efficiently
Popup Chinese Translator Understand Chinese inside any Windows application, website or PDF.
Chinese Grammar Wiki All Chinese grammar, organised by level, all in one place.

Join the conversation

You can post now and select your username and password later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Click here to reply. Select text to quote.

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Create New...