One of the most popular and influential Mahayana sutras in East Asia and the basis on which the Tiantai and Nichiren sects of Buddhism were established. Like all Buddhist texts, it was probably written several hundred years after the death of Sakyamuni Buddha. According to translator Burton Watson, it may have been originally composed in a Prakrit dialect and then later translated into Sanskrit to lend it greater respectability. This sutra is well-known for its extensive instruction on the concept and usage of "expedient means," mostly in the form of parables. It is also one of the first sutras to coin the term Mahayana, or Great Vehicle Buddhism. (from Wikipedia)
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