The 9th International Conference Buddhism & Australia
Chinese Buddhist Encyclopedia Illustrations
|Articles by alphabetic order|
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An alphabet (vaṇṇamālā) is a set of letters or symbols in a fixed order used for writing a language. The Buddha’s discourses were first written in India, probably around the 2nd century BCE, in a script called Brāhmī. The edicts of King Aśoka were written in this same script. Brāhmī has 72 letters and was written from left to right. All later Indian scripts evolved from Brāhmī as did Sinhalese, Tibetan, Burmese and Thai. Hanacaraka or Carakan is also derived from Brahmi.
One of the Buddha’s most famous sayings is: ‘Avoid everything evil, develop the good and purify the mind; this is the teaching of the Buddhas.’ (Dhp.183). Here is the original Pāḷi of these words in Brāhmī.