“Like drops of dew, or flashes of lightning…”
All conditioned phenomena
Are like dreams, illusions, bubbles, or shadows;
Like drops of dew, or flashes of lightning;
Thusly should they be contemplated.
This quote is taken from a wood block printed copy of the Vajracchedikā Prajñāpāramitā Sūtra or Diamond Sutra held in the British Library which is reported to be the earliest example of a mass produced block printed “book” (it is in point of fact a scroll) which mentions the actual date it was published within its pages.
The book apparently shows a real sense of understanding with regards to its design and layout which suggests that the publisher/maker was aware of prior designs and perhaps a rich history of woodblock printing.The British Library copy (purchased by archaeologist M.A. (Aurel) Stein* in 1907 froma monk guarding the walled up Mogao Caves, in northwest China) has the form of a scroll measuring about 16 feet long.
*Apparently Britain’s “Indiana Jones”, despite being Hungarian by birth, see Alma Tadema and various Tennis Players for more of that (ironically) aquisitional shenaneggans…
Thanks to @mylittlebigtown on Twitter for peaking my interest and to @CalvinInnes for retweeting it.