The Lamp of Discernment (Prajñāpradīpa) 般若燈論釋

Verses by Nāgārjuna, explained by Bhāviveka, translated by Prabhākaramitra


第 30 冊 No. 1566 般若燈論釋 偈本龍樹菩薩 釋論分別明菩薩 唐 波羅頗蜜多羅譯 共 15 卷 Volume 30, No. 1566; Discernment of the Lamp; Prajñāpradīpamūlamadhyamakavṛtti (Bore Deng Lun Shi); Verses by Nāgārjuna, explained by Bhāviveka, translated by Prabhākaramitra in the Tang in 15 scrolls

Alternative titles



An important commentary on the 中論 Fundamental Verses on the Middle Way by 龍樹 Nāgārjuna. Bhāviveka takes a different position and to 佛護 Buddhapālita in stating that, in addition to simply negating the arguments of opponents based on contradictory consequenses, explanatory reasons and examples should be presented. Bhāviveka was apparently the first to use the formal syllogism of Indian logic in the Madhyamaka school and the first to mention Buddhist and non-Buddhist schools that the debate opponents belonged to (Ames 2019, p. 4).


Sanskrit title and date 629-632 from Lancaster (2004, 'K 578')

English translation

Ames, William 2019, The Lamp of Discernment: A Translation of Chapters 1-12 of Bhāvaviveka’s Prajñāpradīpa, Contemporary Issues in Buddhist Studies, Moraga, California: BDK America, Inc. From Tibetan.

Primary Source

Nāgārjuna, Bhāviveka, and Prabhākaramitra (trans.), 《般若燈論釋》 'Prajñāpradīpamūlamadhyamakavṛtti (Bore Deng Lun Shi),' in Taishō shinshū Daizōkyō 《大正新脩大藏經》, in Takakusu Junjiro, ed., (Tokyo: Taishō Shinshū Daizōkyō Kankōkai, 1988), Vol. 30, No. 1566, Accessed 2016-10-16,


  1. BL, s.v. Prajñāpradīpa, p. 658.
  2. FGDB, s.v. 般若燈論.
  3. Lancaster 2004, s.v. K 578.
  4. Siderits and Katsura 2013, p. 2.

Collection vocabulary analysis