Buddhism

Buddhism Author : Daisaku Ikeda
Release : 2009-06-01
Publisher : Middleway Press
ISBN : 097792453X
File Size : 90.97 MB
Format : PDF
Download : 623
Read : 1275

Beginning with the events immediately following the dark days after the death of Shakyamuni and continuing over a period of 1,000 years, this dynamic tome covers a vast and complex series of events and developments in the history of Buddhism. Through a thorough examination of its early development in India, a new light is cast on little-known aspects of Buddhist history and its relevance to the understanding of Buddhism today. Topics include the formation of the Buddhist canon, the cultural exchange between the East and West, and the spirit of the Lotus Sutra.

An Archaeological History of Indian Buddhism

An Archaeological History of Indian Buddhism Author : Lars Fogelin
Release : 2015-04-01
Publisher : Oxford University Press
ISBN : 0190266929
File Size : 77.86 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download : 283
Read : 898

An Archaeological History of Indian Buddhism is a comprehensive survey of Indian Buddhism from its origins in the 6th century BCE, through its ascendance in the 1st millennium CE, and its eventual decline in mainland South Asia by the mid-2nd millennium CE. Weaving together studies of archaeological remains, architecture, iconography, inscriptions, and Buddhist historical sources, this book uncovers the quotidian concerns and practices of Buddhist monks and nuns (the sangha), and their lay adherents--concerns and practices often obscured in studies of Buddhism premised largely, if not exclusively, on Buddhist texts. At the heart of Indian Buddhism lies a persistent social contradiction between the desire for individual asceticism versus the need to maintain a coherent community of Buddhists. Before the early 1st millennium CE, the sangha relied heavily on the patronage of kings, guilds, and ordinary Buddhists to support themselves. During this period, the sangha emphasized the communal elements of Buddhism as they sought to establish themselves as the leaders of a coherent religious order. By the mid-1st millennium CE, Buddhist monasteries had become powerful political and economic institutions with extensive landholdings and wealth. This new economic self-sufficiency allowed the sangha to limit their day-to-day interaction with the laity and begin to more fully satisfy their ascetic desires for the first time. This withdrawal from regular interaction with the laity led to the collapse of Buddhism in India in the early-to-mid 2nd millennium CE. In contrast to the ever-changing religious practices of the Buddhist sangha, the Buddhist laity were more conservative--maintaining their religious practices for almost two millennia, even as they nominally shifted their allegiances to rival religious orders. This book also serves as an exemplar for the archaeological study of long-term religious change through the perspectives of practice theory, materiality, and semiotics.

The Golden Age of Indian Buddhist Philosophy

The Golden Age of Indian Buddhist Philosophy Author : Jan Westerhoff
Release : 2018-05-17
Publisher : Oxford University Press
ISBN : 019873266X
File Size : 32.8 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Docs
Download : 262
Read : 890

Jan Westerhoff unfolds the story of one of the richest episodes in the history of Indian thought, the development of Buddhist philosophy in the first millennium CE. He starts from the composition of the Abhidharma works before the beginning of the common era and continues up to the time of Dharmakirti in the sixth century. This period was characterized by the development of a variety of philosophical schools and approaches that have shaped Buddhist thought up to the present day: the scholasticism of the Abhidharma, the Madhyamaka's theory of emptiness, Yogacara idealism, and the logical and epistemological works of Dinnaga and Dharmakirti. The book attempts to describe the historical development of these schools in their intellectual and cultural context, with particular emphasis on three factors that shaped the development of Buddhist philosophical thought: the need to spell out the contents of canonical texts, the discourses of the historical Buddha and the Mahayana sutras; the desire to defend their positions by sophisticated arguments against criticisms from fellow Buddhists and from non-Buddhist thinkers of classical Indian philosophy; and the need to account for insights gained through the application of specific meditative techniques. While the main focus is the period up to the sixth century CE, Westerhoff also discusses some important thinkers who influenced Buddhist thought between this time and the decline of Buddhist scholastic philosophy in India at the beginning of the thirteenth century. His aim is that the historical presentation will also allow the reader to get a better systematic grasp of key Buddhist concepts such as non-self, suffering, reincarnation, karma, and nirvana.

The Sinitic Encounter in Southeast China through the First Millennium CE

The Sinitic Encounter in Southeast China through the First Millennium CE Author : Hugh R. Clark
Release : 2015-10-31
Publisher : University of Hawaii Press
ISBN : 0824857186
File Size : 66.52 MB
Format : PDF, Kindle
Download : 360
Read : 354

This work engages two of the most neglected themes in China’s long history: the integration of lands south of the Yangtze River into China and its impact on Chinese culture. The roots of Chinese civilization are commonly traced to the North. For millennia after the foundations of the northern culture had been laid, the South was not part of its mandate, and long after the imperial center had claimed political control in the late first millennium BCE, it remained culturally distinct. Yet for the past one thousand years the South has been the cultural, demographic, economic—and, on occasion, political—center of China. The process whereby this was accomplished has long been overlooked in Chinese historiography. Hugh Clark offers a new perspective on the process of assimilation and accommodation that led to the new alignment. He begins by focusing on the stages of encounter between the sinitic north and the culturally diverse and alien south. Initially northerners and southerners looked on each other with antipathy: To the former, the non-sinitic inhabitants of the South were “barbarians.” To these “barbarians,” northerners were arrogantly hegemonic. Such attitudes led to patterns of resistance and alienation across the South that endured for many centuries until, as Clark suggests, the South grew in importance within the empire—a development that was finally recognized under the Song. Clark’s approach to the second theme poses a fundamental challenge to what is meant by “Chinese culture.” Drawing on his long familiarity with southern Fujian, he closely examines the pre-sinitic cultural and religious heritage as well as later cults on the southeast coast to argue that an enduring legacy of pre-sinitic indigenous southern culture contributed significantly to late imperial and modern China, effectively challenging the paradigm of northern cultural hegemony that has dominated Chinese history for centuries. The Sinitic Encounter in Southeast China is a path-breaking book that puts long-neglected issues back on the historian’s table for further investigation.

From Lineage to State

From Lineage to State Author : Romila Thapar
Release : 1999-11-01
Publisher : Oxford University Press
ISBN : 0199087652
File Size : 43.97 MB
Format : PDF, ePub
Download : 252
Read : 528

This book is a concise collection of lectures which discuss the nature of early Indian society during the mid-first millennium BC and relate it to the ancient Indian historical tradition in its earliest forms. It also looks at the particular character of social formations, their genesis, and continuity as part of the later Indian social landscape. Examining the social and political formulations of the period, this volume analyses the transformation of lineage-based societies into state formulations. It considers the migration and arrival of the monarchies in the middle Ganga valley, where the evolution of these societies resulted in the formation of a state. It provides insights into environmental influences on settlements, the particularities of caste, the role of rituals, and the interaction of ideology with these changes. The volume presents an account of the interplay of a range of variables in state formation.

Birth in Buddhism

Birth in Buddhism Author : Amy Paris Langenberg
Release : 2017-06-26
Publisher : Taylor & Francis
ISBN : 1315512521
File Size : 45.25 MB
Format : PDF, Docs
Download : 683
Read : 274

Recent decades have seen a groundswell in the Buddhist world, a transnational agitation for better opportunities for Buddhist women. Many of the main players in the transnational nuns movement self-identify as feminists but other participants in this movement may not know or use the language of feminism. In fact, many ordained Buddhist women say they seek higher ordination so that they might be better Buddhist practitioners, not for the sake of gender equality. Eschewing the backward projection of secular liberal feminist categories, this book describes the basic features of the Buddhist discourse of the female body, held more or less in common across sectarian lines, and still pertinent to ordained Buddhist women today. The textual focus of the study is an early-first-millennium Sanskrit Buddhist work, "Descent into the Womb scripture" or Garbhāvakrānti-sūtra. Drawing out the implications of this text, the author offers innovative arguments about the significance of childbirth and fertility in Buddhism, namely that birth is a master metaphor in Indian Buddhism; that Buddhist gender constructions are centrally shaped by Buddhist birth discourse; and that, by undermining the religious importance of female fertility, the Buddhist construction of an inauspicious, chronically impure, and disgusting femininity constituted a portal to a new, liberated, feminine life for Buddhist monastic women. Thus, this study of the Buddhist discourse of birth is also a genealogy of gender in middle period Indian Buddhism. Offering a new critical perspective on the issues of gender, bodies and suffering, this book will be of interest to an interdisciplinary audience, including researchers in the field of Buddhism, South Asian history and religion, gender and religion, theory and method in the study of religion, and Buddhist medicine.

Southeast Asia

Southeast Asia Author : Keat Gin Ooi
Release : 2004
Publisher : ABC-CLIO
ISBN : 1576077705
File Size : 64.47 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Docs
Download : 719
Read : 1056

Contains over eight hundred alphabetically arranged entries that provide information about topics related to the historical development and global influence of Southeast Asia, covering politics, war, religion, socioeconomics, ethnohistory, geography, and folklore.

An Archaeological History of Indian Buddhism

An Archaeological History of Indian Buddhism Author : Lars Fogelin
Release : 2015-03-02
Publisher : Oxford University Press
ISBN : 0199948224
File Size : 64.49 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Mobi
Download : 131
Read : 946

An Archaeological History of Indian Buddhism is a comprehensive survey of Indian Buddhism from its origins in the 6th century BCE, through its ascendance in the 1st millennium CE, and its eventual decline in mainland South Asia by the mid-2nd millennium CE. Weaving together studies of archaeological remains, architecture, iconography, inscriptions, and Buddhist historical sources, this book uncovers the quotidian concerns and practices of Buddhist monks and nuns (the sangha), and their lay adherents--concerns and practices often obscured in studies of Buddhism premised largely, if not exclusively, on Buddhist texts. At the heart of Indian Buddhism lies a persistent social contradiction between the desire for individual asceticism versus the need to maintain a coherent community of Buddhists. Before the early 1st millennium CE, the sangha relied heavily on the patronage of kings, guilds, and ordinary Buddhists to support themselves. During this period, the sangha emphasized the communal elements of Buddhism as they sought to establish themselves as the leaders of a coherent religious order. By the mid-1st millennium CE, Buddhist monasteries had become powerful political and economic institutions with extensive landholdings and wealth. This new economic self-sufficiency allowed the sangha to limit their day-to-day interaction with the laity and begin to more fully satisfy their ascetic desires for the first time. This withdrawal from regular interaction with the laity led to the collapse of Buddhism in India in the early-to-mid 2nd millennium CE. In contrast to the ever-changing religious practices of the Buddhist sangha, the Buddhist laity were more conservative--maintaining their religious practices for almost two millennia, even as they nominally shifted their allegiances to rival religious orders. This book also serves as an exemplar for the archaeological study of long-term religious change through the perspectives of practice theory, materiality, and semiotics.

Reading The Tale of Genji

Reading The Tale of Genji Author : Thomas Harper
Release : 2015-12-01
Publisher : Columbia University Press
ISBN : 0231537204
File Size : 32.59 MB
Format : PDF, Mobi
Download : 240
Read : 1143

The Tale of Genji, written one thousand years ago, is a masterpiece of Japanese literature, is often regarded as the best prose fiction in the language. Read, commented on, and reimagined by poets, scholars, dramatists, artists, and novelists, the tale has left a legacy as rich and reflective as the work itself. This sourcebook is the most comprehensive record of the reception of The Tale of Genji to date. It presents a range of landmark texts relating to the work during its first millennium, almost all of which are translated into English for the first time. An introduction prefaces each set of documents, situating them within the tradition of Japanese literature and cultural history. These texts provide a fascinating glimpse into Japanese views of literature, poetry, imperial politics, and the place of art and women in society. Selections include an imagined conversation among court ladies gossiping about their favorite characters and scenes in Genji; learned exegetical commentary; a vigorous debate over the morality of Genji; and an impassioned defense of Genji's ability to enhance Japan's standing among the twentieth century's community of nations. Taken together, these documents reflect Japan's fraught history with vernacular texts, particularly those written by women.

Buddhist Art of Myanmar

Buddhist Art of Myanmar Author : Sylvia Fraser-Lu
Release : 2015-01-01
Publisher : Yale University Press
ISBN : 0300209452
File Size : 40.79 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Docs
Download : 675
Read : 606

A stunning showcase of exceptional and rare works of Buddhist art, presented to the international community for the first time The practice of Buddhism in Myanmar (Burma) has resulted in the production of dazzling objects since the 5th century. This landmark publication presents the first overview of these magnificent works of art from major museums in Myanmar and collections in the United States, including sculptures, paintings, textiles, and religious implements created for temples and monasteries, or for personal devotion. Many of these pieces have never before been seen outside of Myanmar. Accompanied by brilliant color photography, essays by Sylvia Fraser-Lu, Donald M. Stadtner, and scholars from around the world synthesize the history of Myanmar from the ancient through colonial periods and discuss the critical links between religion, geography, governance, historiography, and artistic production. The authors examine the multiplicity of styles and techniques throughout the country, the ways Buddhist narratives have been conveyed through works of art, and the context in which the diverse objects were used. Certain to be the essential resource on the subject, Buddhist Art of Myanmar illuminates two millennia of rarely seen masterpieces.

Hindu Art

Hindu Art Author : T. Richard Blurton
Release : 1993
Publisher : Harvard University Press
ISBN : 9780674391895
File Size : 51.17 MB
Format : PDF
Download : 536
Read : 251

From the linga of Shiva to ritual lamps, from a Vishnu temple to a heap of stones streaked with sacred vermilion, from illustrations of the epic adventures of Rama to a terracotta goddess figurine, the art Hinduism has inspired over the centuries is as rich and various as the religion itself - and, for most Westerners, as unknown. Hindu Art offers a key to this mystery. A splendid, richly illustrated introduction, the book opens to readers the manifold glories of the religious art of the Indian subcontinent. The narratives that Hindu artists illustrate, the gods they depict, and the forms they observe are the products of thousands of years of tradition and development. In a survey that stretches back to prehistory, T. Richard Blurton discusses religious, cultural and historical influences that figure in Hindu art, as well as those that Hinduism shares with Buddhism and Jainism. Tracing the development of Hindu art, he shows how it has come to embrace the widely varying styles of regions from Nepal to Afghanistan, from Sri Lanka to Bangladesh. Against this historical background, Blurton considers the use of images from the three major cults of Hinduism - the worship of Shiva, Vishnu and the Great Goddess - in painting, sculpture and temple architecture. As fascinating as it is informative, Hindu Art offers invaluable insight into one of the world's great and ancient cultures. It will prove an indispensable resource for anyone with an interest in the art of India.

From Indra’s Net to Internet

From Indra’s Net to Internet Author : Daniel Veidlinger
Release : 2018-08-31
Publisher : University of Hawaii Press
ISBN : 0824876288
File Size : 73.78 MB
Format : PDF
Download : 757
Read : 657

In this sweeping and ambitious intellectual history, Daniel Veidlinger traces the affinity between Buddhist ideas and communications media back to the efflorescence of Buddhism in the Axial Age of the mid-first millennium BCE. He uses both communications theory and the idea of convergent evolution to show how Buddhism arose in the largely urban milieu of Axial Age northeastern India and spread rapidly along the transportation and trading nodes of the Silk Road, where it appealed to merchants and traders from a variety of backgrounds. Throughout, he compares early phases of Buddhism with contemporary developments in which rapid changes in patterns of social interaction were also experienced and brought about by large-scale urbanization and growth in communication and transportation. In both cases, such changes supported the expansive consciousness needed to allow Buddhism to germinate. Veidlinger argues that Buddhist ideas tend to fare well in certain media environments; through a careful analysis of communications used in these contexts, he finds persuasive parallels with modern advances in communications technology that amplify the conditions and effects found along ancient trade routes. From Indra’s Net to Internet incorporates historical research as well as data collected using computer-based analysis of user-generated web content to demonstrate that robust communication networks, which allow for relatively easy contact among a variety of people, support a de-centered understanding of the self, greater compassion for others, an appreciation of interdependence, a universal outlook, and a reduction in emphasis on the efficacy of ritual—all of which lie at the heart of the Buddha’s teachings. The book’s interdisciplinary approach should appeal to those interested in not only Buddhism, media studies and history, but also computer science, cognitive science, and cultural evolution.

Making Sense of Tantric Buddhism

Making Sense of Tantric Buddhism Author : Christian K. Wedemeyer
Release : 2014-05-06
Publisher : Columbia University Press
ISBN : 0231162413
File Size : 30.22 MB
Format : PDF, Docs
Download : 302
Read : 1233

Making Sense of Tantric Buddhism fundamentally rethinks the nature of the transgressive theories and practices of the Buddhist Tantric traditions, challenging the notion that the Tantras were “marginal” or primitive and situating them instead—both ideologically and institutionally—within larger trends in mainstream Buddhist and Indian culture. Critically surveying prior scholarship, Wedemeyer exposes the fallacies of attributing Tantric transgression to either the passions of lusty monks, primitive tribal rites, or slavish imitation of Saiva traditions. Through comparative analysis of modern historical narratives—that depict Tantrism as a degenerate form of Buddhism, a primal religious undercurrent, or medieval ritualism—he likewise demonstrates these to be stock patterns in the European historical imagination. Through close analysis of primary sources, Wedemeyer reveals the lived world of Tantric Buddhism as largely continuous with the Indian religious mainstream and deploys contemporary methods of semiotic and structural analysis to make sense of its seemingly repellent and immoral injunctions. Innovative, semiological readings of the influential Guhyasamaja Tantra underscore the text’s overriding concern with purity, pollution, and transcendent insight—issues shared by all Indic religions—and a large-scale, quantitative study of Tantric literature shows its radical antinomianism to be a highly managed ritual observance restricted to a sacerdotal elite. These insights into Tantric scripture and ritual clarify the continuities between South Asian Tantrism and broader currents in Indian religion, illustrating how thoroughly these “radical” communities were integrated into the intellectual, institutional, and social structures of South Asian Buddhism.

The Snake and the Mongoose

The Snake and the Mongoose Author : Nathan McGovern
Release : 2018-10-24
Publisher : Oxford University Press
ISBN : 0190640812
File Size : 74.3 MB
Format : PDF, ePub, Docs
Download : 873
Read : 162

Since the beginning of modern Indology in the 19th century, the relationship between the early Indian religions of Buddhism, Jainism, and Hinduism has been predicated on a perceived dichotomy between two meta-historical identities: "the Brahmans" (purveyors of the ancient Vedic texts and associated ritual system) and the newer "non-Brahmanical" sramana movements from which the Buddhists and Jains emerged. Textbook and scholarly accounts postulate an opposition between these two groups, citing the 2nd-century BCE Sanskrit grammarian Patañjali, who is often quoted erroneously as likening them to the proverbial enemies snake and mongoose. Scholars continue to privilege Brahmanical Hindu accounts of early Indian history, and further portray Buddhist and Jain deviations from those accounts as evidence of their opposition to a pre-existing Brahmanism. In The Snake and The Mongoose, Nathan McGovern turns this commonly-accepted model of the origins of the early Indian religions on its head. His book seeks to de-center the Hindu Brahman from our understanding of Indian religion by "taming the snake and the mongoose"--that is, by abandoning the anachronistic distinction between "Brahmanical" and "non-Brahmanical." Instead, McGovern allows the earliest articulations of identity in Indian religion to speak for themselves through a comparative reading of texts preserved by the three major groups that emerged from the social, political, cultural, and religious foment of the late first millennium BCE: the Buddhists and Jains as they represented themselves in their earliest sutras, and the Vedic Brahmans as they represented themselves in their Dharma Sutras. The picture that emerges is not of a fundamental dichotomy between Brahmanical and non-Brahmanical, but rather of many different groups who all saw themselves as Brahmanical. Thus, McGovern argues, it was through the contestation between these groups that the distinction between Brahmanical and non-Brahmanical--the snake and the mongoose--emerged.

Family in Buddhism

Family in Buddhism Author : Liz Wilson
Release : 2013-08-01
Publisher : SUNY Press
ISBN : 1438447531
File Size : 73.51 MB
Format : PDF, Mobi
Download : 846
Read : 608

A wide-ranging exploration of Buddhism and family in Asia—from biological families to families created in monasteries. The Buddha left his home and family and enjoined his followers to go forth and “become homeless.” With a traditionally celibate clergy, Asian Buddhism is often regarded as a world-renouncing religion inimical to family life. This edited volume counters this view, showing how Asian Buddhists in a wide range of historical and geographical circumstances relate as kin to their biological families and to the religious families they join. Using contemporary and historical case studies as well as textual examples, contributors explore how Asian Buddhists invoke family ties in the intentional communities they create and use them to establish religious authority and guard religious privilege. The language of family and lineage emerges as central to a variety of South and East Asian Buddhist contexts. With an interdisciplinary, Pan-Asian approach, Family in Buddhism challenges received wisdom in religious studies and offers new ways to think about family and society.

Archaeology and Buddhism in South Asia

Archaeology and Buddhism in South Asia Author : Himanshu Prabha Ray
Release : 2017-08-31
Publisher : Taylor & Francis
ISBN : 1351394320
File Size : 76.48 MB
Format : PDF, ePub
Download : 771
Read : 569

This book traces the archaeological trajectory of the expansion of Buddhism and its regional variations in South Asia. Focusing on the multireligious context of the subcontinent in the first millennium BCE, the volume breaks from conventional studies that pose Buddhism as a counter to the Vedic tradition to understanding the religion more integrally in terms of dhamma (teachings of the Buddha), dāna (practice of cultivating generosity) and the engagement with the written word. The work underlines that relic and image worship were important features in the spread of Buddhism in the region and were instrumental in bringing the monastics and the laity together. Further, the author examines the significance of the histories of monastic complexes (viharas, stupas, caityas) and also religious travel and pilgrimage that provided connections across the subcontinent and the seas. An interdisciplinary study, this book will be of great interest to students and scholars in South Asian studies, religion, especially Buddhist studies, history and archaeology.

Esoteric Buddhism at Dunhuang

Esoteric Buddhism at Dunhuang Author :
Release : 2010-01-28
Publisher : BRILL
ISBN : 9004190147
File Size : 38.40 MB
Format : PDF, Mobi
Download : 159
Read : 459

Drawing a wide variety of texts and images from Dunhuang, the six original contributions to this collection advance our understanding of the development of Esoteric Buddhism in late first millennium Tibet and China. Ritual, philosophy, and mortuary practice are among the topics considered.