The Woodenfish sutra translation project aims to produce bilingual editions of a sizeable portion of the Buddhist canon, translated into English from the original Chinese. With FGS’s publishing company, Buddha’s Light Publishing, Woodenfish has thus far produced Buddha’s Light editions of the Prajnaparamita Heart Sutra, the Vajra Prajnaparamita Sutra, the Amitabha Sutra, the Sutra on the Past Vows of Ksitigarbha Bodhisattva, the Sutras on Filial Piety and the Nagasena Bhiksu Sutra. The chief translators on the project are Venerable Yifa and HBMLP 2004 participant Peter Romaskiewicz. They coordinate with the Center for Sutra Translation and Research at the University of the West.
The Buddha’s Light editions are unique in a number of ways:
- Each sutra copy provides facing bilingual pages, so that students who are learning Chinese can compare the English translation with the original text. Each copy also includes a brief history of the particular sutra, an exhaustive glossary of foreign words and ideas, and a translation catalogue which lists many of the other Chinese and English translations of the same text.
- Each translation attempts to provide a fluid, yet literal rendition of the Chinese text, trying to capture the experience of reading sutras in Chinese while remaining as faithful as possible to the original text.
- Woodenfish aims to produce not just one, but a complete series of translations of specifically Chinese Buddhist sutras using a consistent vocabulary for technical terms and foreign concepts. In all translations, a standardized lexicon and methodology is used, so that a technical term will be translated, or transliterated, in the same manner in every volume in the series.
Download some of the Sutra Translation Project's translations: