30 June 2011

Digital Tibetan

For those who use Tibetan on computers, Digital Tibetan Wiki, looks to be a very useful site. Also if I write this:

And what you see is this:

27 June 2011

Tibetan Calligraphy Course.

Tibetan Calligraphy Course With Tashi Mannox. What a great way to spend a weekend, though I think we were all exhausted by the end! Pictures are on my Flickr Site. They're all a bit grainy, but email me if you want to get copies of the originals.

My own calligraphy is here.

Cheers Jayarava

23 June 2011

Final Cover Design

Well, here is the final cover design for the book. Front and back. The background image is made from layered Mandlebrot set images I made a while back (see more on my Flickr site). The lettering on the front is a garbhadhātu maṇḍala with a, ā, aṃ, aḥ, and āṃḥ, and the Avalokiteśvara mantra in white. The back is part of the Karaṇḍamudrā Dhāraṇī. I'm quite pleased with this, it is striking and communicates something of the content, and the fire of my own passion for the subject.

I still want to check a few little details - for example I need to thank another friend in the acknowledgements that I had overlooked. But the text is basically finished. I hope to be able to announce that it is for sale by the end of next week - but you know if you've been following this thread that everything takes longer than expected! Nearly there.

If anyone is going to be at the Tibetan Calligraphy workshop with Tashi Mannox in London this weekend, then I look forward to meeting you, and I will have a proof copy of the book to look at.

07 June 2011

Palm Leaf Manuscript

text-monochrome by jayarava
text-monochrome, a photo by jayarava on Flickr.

Just bought this for £5 from a charity shop. Trying to identify the script. It looks a bit like Sinhala to me, but the images on the cover are of Ganeṣa, Dūṛga and Hayagrīva. Clearly it is some kind of Southern Brāhmī script.

Can anyone shed light on what this script is?

Most of the manuscript is in poor condition, and very difficult to read.

Upadate 12-6

Hi Jayarva,

I went through the Manuscript again, actually the transcribed sentence should be:

(The vertical loop is the virama. The /i/ sign is more open looped in the manuscript). In cursive handwriting, the adjacent /aa/ vowel sign seems to have written connected to the ka. Though I am not sure of /ḍ/ & /d/ readings.

කොටවෙලා/කොට වෙලා seems to give some Google hits in Sinhala.

I could make out some thing with 7th line of the left section:
[+]දේ කිරි ගෙනෙල්ලා කටෙ තිය[+]
[+]de kiri gĕnĕllā kaṭĕ tiya
(de is probably a partial word ending)
කිරි/ගෙනෙල්ලා/කටෙ/තිය as individual words give Sinhala hits in Google. The Combined කටෙ තිය is also giving hits. In the initial part of the manuscript, කේ ke (with explicit long o) is written, which is characteristic of Sinhala. (Similary /re/ is written with explicit long /e/ )

Also, there seem to be some word endings with /ya/ - again pointing the Sinhala (Even the Skt. sutra is written as sutraya in Sinhala ). The document is most probably Sinhala. If you can get some one with working knowledge of Sinhala, the content of the manuscript can be figured out.


[Thanks Vinod. Something odd happened with your comment so I cut and pasted from the email notification - hope you don't mind. Thanks for your help! JR]

06 June 2011

Book Progress

At the beginning of the week before last I thought I'd be finished in a few days. However indexing is slow work, plus I was forced to make some changes that mucked up the first draft of the index (which I am - probably unwisely - doing manually). Also I've had some difficulties with the cover. My current estimate is another two weeks at the current rate of progress. After 6 years a couple of weeks extra don't seem so bad, but I'm excited about the prospect of getting it finished.

I will be attending Tashi Mannox's calligraphy workshop in London on the 26th June and hope to have a few copies with me for that. (Reminds me I must brush up on the Tibetan alphabet!)

01 June 2011

Brāhmī inscription from Sañchi

Brahmi by nikhilgul
Brahmi, a photo by nikhilgul on Flickr.

Brāhmī script: poṭhakasa bhikhuno dānaṃ *
i,e, donated by Bhikkhu Poṭhakasa

The final maṅgala symbol represents a bodhi tree surrounded by a railing.