Questions tagged [mahayana]

One of the two major vehicles of Buddhism.

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85 views

Reference request for "our Buddha nature chooses not to be enlightened"?

I seem to remember that Mahayana Buddhism said somewhere something along the lines of, "Our Buddha nature (or the Buddha) chooses not to be enlightened". I am not sure if I am remembering this ...
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Does any buddhist school, extant or otherwise, say that there is no svabhava what-so-ever?

Does any buddhist school, extant or otherwise, say that there is no svabhava what-so-ever? I was thinking maybe an early school without the abhidahrma (mahasanghika) or perhaps prasangika-yogaraca in ...
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What is the general Buddhist consensus on catharsis?

Is it fine if you are mindful while doing it? Or did the Buddha denounce such practices as revelling or exaggerating emotions to provide temporary relief? I find that simply being mindful while ...
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Which body of the Buddha belongs to the Buddha nature?

Which body of the Buddha belongs to the Buddha nature? I suppose all three, but I would be interested to hear otherwise.
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Tathagatagarbha and dhammakaya

Can we consider 'tathagatagarbha' and 'dhammakaya' as synonyms? If not, what is the difference between those words.
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Do (any) Mahayana Buddhists teach subjectivity?

I don't think "self" is the right term in English for the sort of quality I want to ask about. So, regardless of its ontological status, or that of what it relates to (objects), do (any) Mahayana ...
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Russian language Mulamadhyamakakarika?

Would anyone have any advice on where to find a good Russian translation of Nagarjuna's book? (I've tried myself, but Russian is no longer my first language!)
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A good website for Mahayana texts?

The classical canon gets good coverage with suttacentral and accesstoinsight, but I was wondering if there was such a website for Mahayana writings. (Post-canon writings diverge and become extensive, ...
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Are 'elements' defined as non-suffering?

I'd like to question something from this answer without disputing it, i.e. there was a phrase it in which I found novel: You do this by seeing that your suffering is impermanent and empty (...
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What is the Buddhist perspective on passively altering your subconcious?

Firstly I'd like to provide some context: When I first began getting into the Buddhist teachings, specifically that of the Theravada tradition, I'd often do things such as passively play the ...
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How does one do an "eye opening" for a new statue?

What the actual words or at least the structure of of the ceremony/ritual? I'm particularly interested from the Mahayana East Asian standpoint (Chinese/Korean/Vietnamese/Japanese) However, I don't ...
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Taking refuge in practice

My understanding of "taking refuge" is reciting a mantra. However, is there a certain ceremony to become fully Buddhist? Is it just repeating the mantra X number of times, or is there more to it?
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What role does zen or zazen play in Tendai?

I would like to know how Tendai or indeed Tiantai, views its use of zazen or zen. I would provisionally assume it serves a different role than it does or is in Soto and Rinzai and contemporary Chan.
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What does "I worship the Lord of the Thunderbolt" mean, in a translation of Shantideva's Bodhicaryavatara?

Quoted below is from Shantideva's Bodhicaryavatara. I cry aloud, looking for protection. And I worship the Lord of the Thunderbolt. When they have seen him, the messengers of death and the ...
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Are Therevada's cosmology and the Mahanaya's sutras physically impossible?

Are Therevada's cosmology and the Mahanaya's sutras physically, rather than only psychologically, plasusible? I read about the former in the abhidharmakosabhasyam, about all the hells and heavens ...
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Dhamma Language Learning

Anyone know of any methods of learning languages within a Buddhist setting? Like learning to read and listen to Dhamma talks and suttas or learning conversation with dialogues of a Buddhist nature. I ...
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Do the scholastic sects say that chan practice is something separate from themselves?

Dogen famously said that there are no Buddhist schools, and the idea there is [this or that Buddhist school] is the creation of demons, etc. [Dogen's Eihei Koroku, discourse 7.491, reads:] The ...
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Is there a Vipassana meditation in the Mahayana tradition?

I was brought up in the Theravada tradition and have little knowledge on Mahayana. Recently some of my friends participated in a Mahayana retreat and praised it highly. One of them even claimed that ...
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How do kōans work?

A kōan (公案?) (/ˈkoʊ.ɑːn/; Chinese: 公案; pinyin: gōng'àn; Korean: 공안 (kong'an); Vietnamese: công án) is a story, dialogue, question, or statement, (1) which is used in Zen practice to provoke the "great ...
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Can there be "one day becoming a fully-awakened Buddha" after Parinibbana?

The Buddha declare to venerable Sâriputra in the Lotus Sutra that he will become a Buddha one day as it read below, but Sariputta has achieved Parinibbana. Can there be becoming a fully-awakened ...
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What did Santideva, the authour of the Bodhicaryāvatāra, say about the realisabaility of Buddhahood?

What did Santideva, the authour of the Bodhicaryāvatāra, say about the realisabaility of Buddhahood? What assurances did he make?
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Vegetarianism in Buddhism on different schools

Namo Buddhaya I want to ask something related to vegetarianism in Buddhism. This question started when I read about vegetarianism according to several schools of Buddhism such as Theravada and ...
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How important is the surangama sutra in cotemporary buddhism?

How important is the surangama sutra in contemporary Mahayana Buddhism? As far as I know there's never been any "school" which based itself on its interpretations, unlike the Mahaparinirvana, hua-yen,...
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2answers
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Why Buddha said "if you want to remove small/light codes from Vinaya"?

In Maha-parinibbana Sutta, Buddha said "if Sanga want, after I completed Parinibbana, you can remove small and/or light codes from Vinaya". Why Buddha said this approval to Sanga? Is it a kind of ...
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What percent of income do Buddhists give to temples?

From the upaseka precepts: "He levies one sixth of people’s wealth as taxes." I used to just think this was prosocial advice, but for much of Buddhism's history, it has been state supported. ...
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Are there any cultural or religious guidelines for Buddhist tattoos?

I've notice people on Instagram are getting tattoos of Mahakala and other Buddhist deities. Are there any cultural or religious guidelines to consider when getting a tattoo of a Dharmapala or any ...
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Even if those offended are just ignorant about the word "Hinayana", why use it?

Why use a word thought by some to be offensive even if the meaning isn't meant to be offensive? There is no other word that can be used? Would using another word (or phrase) be compassionate towards ...
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What are the Devaputra / Devaputta?

I have occasionally heard about the Devaputra (Sans.) or Devaputta (Pal.), particularly in regards to Mahayana, but haven't been able to find out very much about what exactly these are, as a category ...
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Are the positive qualities of enlightenment ultimate or conventional realities?

Are the positive qualities of enlightenment ultimate or conventional realities? These are permanence, bliss, personality, purity. If they are ultimately the case, can they be directly seen?
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Two-arrows paradigm (Sallatha Sutta) -- in the Mahayana?

The Sallatha Sutta (SN 36.6) in the Pali Canon is well-known in the Theravada and MBI (mindfulness-based-intervention -- MBSR, MBCT, etc) worlds for the two-arrows paradigm. The first arrow is a ...
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Who follows which yana (Vajrayana, Hinayana or Mahayana)?

I have heard about these traditions: Vajrayana, Mahayana, and Hinayana. In today's world, Buddhist people dwell in South Asia and East Asia. Who among them follows each particular sect? Does anybody ...
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Two unconditioned dhammas?

In A history of Indian Buddhism: From Sakyamuni to Early Mahayana, Professor Hirakawa states: Both nirvana and space were considered to be unconditioned dharmas. This fundamental classification of ...
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How do the four marks (cessation, change, etc,) build?

The four marks are, in order from coarse to subtle Cessation Changing Abiding Arising These are discussed in a number of places, but the English language translator of Kihwa's (Korean) commentary ...
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Text request--Tibetan Buddhism

I am looking for some legal, online Tibetan Buddhist texts. I have been studying Buddhism for a long time (although mostly Theravada) and so I am not looking for something at the beginner level. ...
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Escaping "certain death" in the Mahayana tradition: does it occur in India?

I was struck, when reading on the history of Buddhism in China, by the stories of brave monks escaping certain death, often many times in one life. I was curious is this was something Indian ...
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What is Lo Jong mind training?

A friend of mine recently mentioned Lo Jong mind training to me, when I asked my teacher he told me not to worry about it. Would anyone be willing to explain what it is and what it is used for?
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Are there problems from mixing different sources of teachings?

I discovered Buddhism by reading and practising the Theravada teachings. As I wanted to make some progress, I started looking for a teacher who could guide me and direct my practicing. So I decided ...
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Are Bodhisattvas real human beings we can encounter?

I was wondering if bodhisattvas are real life people we can encounter along our path. There seems to be literature on how these beings take vows, but I was wondering if it was common to encounter one ...
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278 views

What does Buddhism say about the existence of a self?

Anatta and Sunyata doctrines from the Tripitaka and later Mahayana/Parjnaparimata sutras both have mentioned "not-self" or "empty of self" doctrines. I am still a bit confused, though, even after ...
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What are Bhavanga and Javana?

Will someone explain Bhavanga and Javana in simple way? At times, they seem non-comprehensible.
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The Law of One Form

In the Burton Watson translation of the Lotus Sutra, on page 136-7 there is mentioning of "The law of one form" Here is an exerpt of where this is mentioned by Shakyamuni: "The thus come one knows ...
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The Nine Devices

I was reading The Lotus Sutra the other day and I came across Shakyamuni referring to "nine devices" as a way of teaching and leading people towardsed "the great vehicle", but upon looking the term, "...
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Does Buddhism have a significant notion of justice

Owen Flanagan in this podcast argued while Buddhism has an extremely well developed notion of compassion, it doesn't have a significant notion of justice. He contrasts this with ancient Greek ...
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Looking for negative reference to women in the Avatamsaka Sutra

I came across this rather gender progressive comment from Nichiren If we examine the Flower Garland Sutra, the first sutra to be preached after the Buddha attained enlightenment, we find that it ...
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What are the 8 Consciousness in Chinese Buddhism

The answeres to the following question: Is the Ocean Samadhi a metaphor or an actual meditation? implply there are 8 types of conciousness in Chinese Buddhism. What are these? How did they originate? ...
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Why is Kwan Yin riding a sea turtle?

And maybe to save two related questions, why does Samantabhadra ride an elephant and Majursri ride a lion? I was meditating with Kwan Yin statute and that was the main distraction, I had no idea why ...
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If you were going to explain Dharmakāya to someone who has never encountered the topic prior, where would you begin?

Dharmakāya is tricky business to explain. If you were to explain it to someone who has never heard of the concept where would you begin? How does it fit in with attraction and aversion? At ...
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Is Buddha immortal? (in Mahayana)

As I know Buddhism, it says 'Nothing is permament' I just came across this in Wikipedia: ...a Buddha is immortal. Even though he descends in the samsara to preach Dharma and save sentient beings ...
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Ultimate existence and the self in Mahayana

I was reading the SEP article on the two truths According to the abhidharmakosa: An entity, the cognition of which does not arise when it is destroyed and, mentally divided, is conventionally ...
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How to address wrong view

Did the Buddha give any teachings on how to deal with individuals spreading wrong view? If someone is expounding their beliefs in a public forum under the guise of the Buddha's teaching, given the ...

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