The Concept of Self as Expressed in Mahāyāna Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra
Although the purport of the teaching on the Self in Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra is the subject of an ongoing debate among the scholars7, it undoubtedly explains the concept of True Self. Williams writes that “the Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra teaches a really existing, permanent element ... in sentient beings. It is this element which enables sentient beings to become Buddhas”. In whichever way we can understand the notion of True Self, it is absolutely clear that Mahāparinirvāṇa Sūtra represents the positive aspect of the reality of Nirvāṇa and Tathāgata which is frequently forgotten or overlooked in the field of Buddhist studies and practice.