17

Your confusion is clear as day to me. :) As is the true meaning of "emptiness". The challenge is how to explain it to you in a way you can understand. :) You are stuck on this idea of "object" being something that exists ontologically. Whether it's made of parts, whether it's a transient aggregate that will eventually fall apart, right ...


13

There is an existent reference to the similarities between Theravāda & Mahāyāna which I will cite: (I think it also applies to Vajrayāna although I may be wrong in this regard.) Whatever our sects, denominations or systems, as Buddhists we all accept the Buddha as our Master who gave us the Teaching. We all take refuge in the Triple Jewel: ...


10

Japan- tattoos are taboo in general, since the assumption only criminals, prostitutes and other low class sorts have tattoos. I think it would be hard to distinguish a religious from a classist objection in Japan. Sri Lanka- recently a tourist was ejected from the country for having a Buddhist themed tattoo Thailand - Buddhist themed tattoo are very common ...


10

This is a fundamental premise of Mayayana, that the goal is not to be extinguished and leave samsara like an Arhat, but to stick around until everyone is enlightened. Here is the zen formulation of the Bodhisattva Vow (couldn't find the Tibetan version) Beings are numberless; I vow to save them. Delusions are inexhaustible; I vow to end them. Dharma ...


10

In MN 71, the Buddha clarifies the meaning of his omniscience to the wandering ascetic Vacchagotta: Vaccha: ‘Venerable sir, I have heard this said: The recluse Gotama is all knowing and all seeing and acknowledges remainderless knowledge and vision in this manner, ‘while walking, standing, lying or awake, constantly and continually knowledge and vision is ...


9

My answer is from the Shin perspective, I'll let someone else answer for Nichiren. Indeed you're right in saying that there are "two" meanings of Namu-Amida-Butsu - and that for the person of faith, it has a special meaning. However, in Shin, Namu-Amida-Butsu is not a mantra. It is understood within an entirely different framework from that of Esoteric ...


9

The oldest existing manuscript clearly identified as Mahāyāna is a birch bark manuscript of the Aṣṭasāhasrikā-prajñāpāramitā-sutra or Discourse on Perfect Wisdom consisting of 8000 [Lines]. This manuscript was carbon dated to 47~147 CE. A version of this text was translated into Chinese in 179 CE by Lokakṣema and was amongst the first few Buddhist texts ...


9

As I was just explaining in a comment to one of my answers, the term "Hinayana" is widely used by Tibetan Buddhism teachers to refer to basic/elementary/foundational (and because of this often simplified) aspects of Buddha-Dharma. If you'd go to their lectures, you'd hear this notion of Hinayana-understanding vs. Mahayana-understanding discussed in almost ...


8

During the beginning of the 4th century CE, Buddhist scholars began composing a new series of Sūtras with the purpose of synthesizing and organizing concepts from earlier Mahāyāna Sūtras, a task which the authors viewed as the third turning of the wheel of Dharma. Three Sūtras from this period left a major impact on the intellectual endeavor of Mahāyāna ...


8

In early Buddhist texts one gains nibbāna and is freed from ever having to be reborn again. Many people achieved this and in relatively short time frames. The Buddha of the early texts seems to have expected the enlightened practitioners he left behind (hundreds if not thousands of them according to the texts) to teach others how to achieve this. If each ...


8

Demographically the majority of Buddhists today (nearly 99%) are born in Asia into Buddhists families and would likely follow their family or local tradition. But assuming your question is regarding those of us who have converted to Buddhism in primarily non Buddhist countries, there may still be no consensus on what the majority of these Buddhist converts ...


8

Of course others have responsibility to rectify the wrong views. There were several individuals spreading wrongly grasped views on Dhamma even during Buddha's time like Arittha, Sati and Sunakkhattha. Buddha's and other monks' reactions on such situations are detailed in Alagaddupama sutta and Mahatanhasankhaya Sutta. Buddha explains the plight of such ...


8

It did not. The Canon is an integral part of Mahayana, has always been. In Chinese Mahayana, the Canon is included in the form of Agamas (translated to Chinese). In Tibetan Mahayana, the Canon is a part of Kangyur (translated from Chinese or Sanskrit to Tibetan). Most of those are the same sutras as in Pali, just with slightly different wording. Some are ...


8

This meta-topic mentioned the Pañha Sutta, which includes, There are these four ways of answering questions. Which four? There are questions that should be answered categorically [straightforwardly yes, no, this, that]. There are questions that should be answered with an analytical (qualified) answer [defining or redefining the terms]. There are questions ...


7

Bodhisatta is Pali, Bodhisattva is Sanskrit, they have the same basic meaning. Wikipedia: In Buddhism, a bodhisattva (Sanskrit: बोधिसत्त्व bodhisattva; Pali: बोधिसत्त bodhisatta) is an enlightenment (bodhi) being (sattva). Traditionally, a bodhisattva is anyone who, motivated by great compassion, has generated bodhicitta, which is a spontaneous ...


7

This question, indeed, requires a whole book in order to be answered completely. Let me address only Theravada and Mahayana here. In two words: The most important aspect is that Theravada is focused on your own liberation from suffering, while Mahayana is targeted to all sentient creatures; There are many consequences here: Theravada assumes that you have ...


7

I practice with the Triratna Buddhists which is an explicit attempt to bring Buddhism into the Western context. It is ecumenical so brings in all traditions so for me this question is very interesting. For us the sutras that are particularly studied are Pali Canon Middle Length Discourses generally but more specifically from the pali canon Satipatthana ...


7

In Theravada, robes may be made of six types of material, including linen, cotton, silk, wool, jute, or hemp (Mv.VIII.3.1). I've got a wool robe myself and it works fine in Canadian winters, so that shouldn't be a factor. There may have been other geographic-based reasons, though; other aspects of monastic discipline might have made it difficult to practice ...


7

Mahayana is not a single tradition. It is a variety of forms the live teaching has taken as it was internalized by people belonging to different cultures and lifestyles over ~2600 years of the realization-transmission cycle. The same direct experience (of Enlightenment) is introduced in different ways. Everyone agrees it is about seeing (aka insight) and ...


7

The recent scholarship that Hanson is referring to is probably this, by Richard Gombrich, the eminent British academic scholar of Buddhism: Kindness and Compassion as means to Nirvana in Early Buddhism This abstract mentions other places where Gombrich explicated his thesis: Gotama Buddha taught that compassion can produce enlightenment. So Richard ...


7

It seems like you're viewing buddha nature as essence. Freedom from imputations, conceptions, conventions, perspective, etc is buddha nature. But don't view it as essence, which would be a perpetuation of imputation of self and precisely what we are trying to avoid. Hope this helps.


7

In AN 4.67, the Buddha allowed the monks to use the paritta to protect themselves from harm. Notice Ven. Thanissaro's note: "This is one of the few protective charms mentioned in the Pali canon and specifically allowed by the Buddha for monks to use (another charm, also allowed to the monks, is contained in DN 32). Note that the power of the charm is said ...


7

The prajnaparamita canon is quite ancient going back to 1-2 BCE. It's not clear if the original set of sutras were composed in Sanskrit or Gandhari first and subsequently translated to Sanskrit. (Source: Wikipedia) However the heart (Hṛdaya) sutra, said to be part of the Prajñāpāramitā Sūtra canon, and most famous certainly, is in the view of modern ...


7

Literally, karuna means "to mourn", "to pity", "to lament" - but the Buddhist meaning is quite different. In Pali Canon karuna is one of the four brahmaviharas, practiced as an antidote against aversion towards people and society due to their shortcomings. Somewhere in the Canon I've read Buddha saying karuna is like what a good king should feel for his ...


7

In my opinion... in Buddhism this kind of worry is called "udacca-kukucca" :) -- "Am I not doing enough of what I should be doing? I am doing this but shouldn't I be doing that instead?" Instead, the perfect mind in Buddhism is A) free of the conflict between "this" vs. "that" and B) makes the best use of any situation. So if real situation presents ...


7

Maybe because Clinging/Upadana is such a powerful destructive force, even advanced practitioners still have a tough time dealing with. So the non-clinging theme reflected through insight into Emptiness/Sunyata throughout the sutra would be a great way to remind us about it. That's why in many Mahayana temples this sutra is usually recited at the end of any ...


7

Warning: To not make it too long, I avoided quotes. In addition, this is merely a summary. Just like with Theravada, there are interpretations. Since I present things in a traditional way, please do not take it personal when I seem to despise so-called Hinayana tenets or practices. We say that a Hinayana arhat still has limitations, obstacles that prevent ...


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