The Avatamsaka Sutra English Translation Project - Hosted by Reverend Heng Sure

The Venerable Master Hsuan Hua said: 

The Flower Adornment (Avatamsaka) Sutra is the sutra of the Dharma realm and of empty space. Throughout the Dharma realm and empty space, there is no place where the Flower Adornment Sutra is not present. Wherever the Flower Adornment Sutra is found, the Buddha is to be found, and also the Dharma and the Sangha of Worthy Sages. 


Master Hua brought the teachings of the Buddha to the West. In 1971, the Master began lecturing the Flower Adornment Sutra and completed the lecture series in nine years and six months. While the Master was lecturing the sutra, the disciples began the English translation of it. At that time, due to his Western disciples’ limited knowledge of the Chinese language, the meaning of the sutra was not thoroughly or accurately translated. Later on, more translators turned up to help; so, the original translation was gradually updated and polished. Hence, the English version of the Flower Adornment Sutra has been developing over time, but has lost its consistency due to the multitude of translators and their respective styles of translation.

Reverend Heng Sure noticed this inconsistency and hoped to complete an English version of the Flower Adornment Sutra in his lifetime. Rev. Heng Sure is a practitioner of the Flower Adornment Sutra. When he started his Three-Steps-One-Bow pilgrimage from Los Angeles to the City of Ten Thousand Buddhas in 1976, he carried the Flower Adornment Sutra. Whenever he bowed down, he recited, “Homage to the Great Flower Adornment Sutra of the Buddha's Expanded Mahayana Teachings and to The Ocean-wide Flower Adornment Assembly of Buddhas and Bodhisattvas.” He completed the pilgrimage in two years and nine months. Furthermore, Rev. Heng Sure joined the original Flower Adornment Sutra lecture series taught by Master Hua, and has dedicated his life to tirelessly propagating the Flower Adornment Sutra

In late February of the year 2011, Rev. Heng Sure called on all the committees of Dharma Realm Buddhist Association (DRBA) to collaborate in translating the sutra, and the request was enthusiastically received. The first sutra translation meeting was held on March 7, 2011 in the conference room of Dharma Realm Buddhist University (DRBU), with more than twenty participants eagerly joining the discussion. Every person participated with sincerity and hoped to make contributions to this noble translation work. After the first meeting, the assembly was grouped by tasks and the direction was set.         

The first translation work began on March 14, 2011. Lively discussion, exchange of opinions and debate occurred at that meeting. Every opinion was received respectfully. It was indeed a great learning opportunity for every participant. The meeting site was just like a big “Avatamsaka classroom.”

The translation meetings are scheduled online for every Monday from 1:00 - 2:45 PM Pacific Time. The total number of participants has grown to almost fifty, and some volunteers from branch monasteries also show great interest in this translation work.

Dates: Every Monday from 1:00 - 2:45 PM Pacific Time

Location: Online via Zoom

The Avatamsaka Sutra is the most expansive teaching the Buddha gave on Bodhisattva practice. This is a rare opportunity to join the translation efforts of the Buddhist Text Translation Society. 

If you are interested in joining the session, please email: