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26

Why is it that Buddhism never compiled a reasonably concise set of canonical texts like the Bible? One could equally ask, "why didn't Christianity compile a lengthy and diverse set of canonical texts like the Tripiṭaka?" The thing is, Buddhism does have a canonical set of texts that are widely viewed by all major Buddhist traditions as canonical (as far as ...


21

Rebirth is a metaphor. There is no literal rebirth (of the same person). This hope for literal rebirth is really a hidden attachment to "I", the desire to continue. Let go. It's Ok, you will die -- and never exist again. In fact, "you" do not exist even now, as a separate being. It is just wrong understanding that is called "I". The world is continuous ...


15

There isn't exactly one short Buddhist bible (see Why isn't there a Buddhist Bible?). The Tripitaka is the Pali canon, possibly the earliest (or at least, among the earliest) of the surviving Buddhist literature. It has three parts, and of these three the Sutta Pitaka is the most relevant (to us). You can read it (or at least begin to read it) online. Web ...


14

I'm a secular Buddhist who takes Mahayana as my starting point. What you are discussing is the cosmology-- the idea that there are six realms, maybe one or more pure lands, and places you can go after you die. In Glenn Wallis's book "Basic Teachings of the Buddha," I think he persuasively argued that the historical Buddha was an extinctionalist and had no ...


12

The Buddha likely spoke in several dialects that were quite similar to Pali. He was immensely well traveled for his time, so in his travels he likely adopted the native dialect to be better understood by the locals. His words were only a small part of his teaching - his enlightened presence and conduct were likely better vessels of his teaching. The Pali ...


12

The short answer is no, and no. The Pāḷi Canon is a translation. Although people in Central Ganges Valley all spoke closely related dialects at the time we think the Buddha lived. The problem of having different words for things was noted at least once in a Pāli text. In MN iii.234 (Araṇavibhanga Sutta) that there can be many local words for the same object, ...


10

Zen Buddhism is part of East Asian Buddhism in general and accepts the entire Chinese Canon, although they don't find a lot of it to be relavent to their practice. Zen Buddhism has always been based primarily off of the meditation practice itself combined with oral teaching, but even if Zen isn't purely derived from the Sutras in the way other schools are, ...


10

I think it is mistaken to think that Christianity just has the Bible as it's authority and everything else is dispensable. That idea only showed up at the time of the protestant reformation, and before that, the writings of the Church fathers (which are quite voluminous) and books on theology were regarded as an absolutely essential part of Christian ...


10

I am not sure about the origin of this quote but possibly as it used as a Zen message it may have come from Bodhidharma. I am sure about its meaning however. It relates both to Enlightenment and Mindfulness. The true practice of mindfulness which means watching the mind to find the Essence of the Mind will lead to Wisdom and Enlightenment. In simple terms we ...


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

The Pāli Canon (Pali: Tipitaka) is the standard collection of scriptures in the Theravada Buddhist tradition, as preserved in the Pāli language. It is the most complete extant early Buddhist canon. It was composed in North India, and preserved orally until it was committed to writing during the Fourth Buddhist Council in Sri Lanka in 29 BCE, approximately ...


9

To straighten view before meditation: Samma,ditthi Sutta Anapana Anapanasati Sutta Satipatthana Satipatthana Sutta and Mahāsatipaṭṭhāna Sutta Kayagatasati Sutta Saṅkhitta Dhamma Sutta Elements / properties Dhātu Vibhaṅga Sutta Titth’ayatana Sutta Maha Hatthi,padapama Sutta Bahu Dhātuka Sutta Reflective / perception based Giri-m-ananda Sutta Indriya ...


9

I've heard that they don't believe in any god. It depends on what you mean by God. Buddhism does not have the concept of a almighty, creator (deism), sustainer, creator plus sustainer (theism), destroyer, everlasting god, external controller or owner or creator of the soul, enforcer of karma or retribution and rewards for one's actions, etc. but does ...


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

The Gateless Gate. The Heart Sutra. The Diamond Sutra. The Shōbōgenzō. These are the first ones that come to my mind as a Zen Buddhist. Here is more information: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zen_and_Sutras


8

Does the Theravada canon have such ideas anywhere at all? This is a far-fetched example which barely answer your question but IMO the Buddha himself kind of returned to the market-place: not as a tradesman nor even a customer, but he did leave his solitude. The description could almost fit him: In the World Barefooted and naked of breast, I ...


7

There are a few sources that suggest the importance of reverence for holy persons. It seems, however, that in the Buddhist context the sense of 'inviolability' usually attached to the idea of blasphemy in Western culture is not present in the same way. That is, all of the passages explicitly link the action to a negative result, either in future existences ...


7

As per Buddha of Pali Canon (AN 3.68, thanks to @Unrul3r for the reference): Aversion (aka anger, aka hatred) has much blame, but is quick to fade away; Obsessive desire (aka greed, aka lust) has little blame, but is slow to fade away; Confusion (aka delusion) both has much blame, and is slow to fade away. As explained in commentary on dharmafarer.org: ...


7

"I hope, sir, that there were no white-clad householders there." "No, friend, there were no white-clad householders there." "It's good, sir, that there were no white-clad householders there." http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/an/an08/an08.023.than.html


7

What you're looking for is Vesali sutta. vesali sutta Then the monks — [thinking,] "The Blessed One, with many lines of reasoning, has given a talk on the unattractiveness [of the body], has spoken in praise of [the perception of] unattractiveness, has spoken in praise of the development of [the perception of] unattractiveness" — remained ...


7

According to Buddhist dependent origination, depending on contact feeling arise, depending on feeling craving arise, depending on craving clinging arise, etc... The feelings that arise is a result of past conditioning and when there is contact the past feeling that was conditioned arise, be that attachment, revulsion or neutral feeling. The practice to ...


7

There might be something along those lines in SN 4.23 Godhika Sutta. Page 85 of The Patimokkha Rules Translated & Explained says, Case (b) is apparently derived from SN 4.23, where Ven. Godhika takes his life and gains arahantship just moments before death


7

It's fairly clear that three times was a social convention for crossing some sort of line; either that or just a convention of the Buddha. See also DN 3: ‘Reverend Gotama, there are four castes: the Khattiyas, the Brahmins, the merchants and the artisans. And of these four castes three — the Khattiyas, the merchants and the artisans — are entirely ...


7

Each Sutta was intended for a specific audience to address a specific issue. This is one of the reasons why there was a need for an Abhidhamma that consolidated the messages from all of the Suttas into a overarching framework. You are absolutely correct that each Nikāya has a different "character". The Dīgha Nikāya tends to include a lot of mythological ...


7

Ven Bodhi discusses this matter and quotes relevant suttas in his "In the Buddha's Words" chapter V "THE WAY TO A FORTUNATE REBIRTH". The following list, which was posted on SuttaCentral, is a greatly expanded version of Ven Bodhi's In the Buddha's Words list: Since i've found Ven. Bodhi reference list, i've been expanding it and here's what it's grown ...


7

You don't believe in any God. Ok. You don't believe in rituals. Ok. Very likely you already don't. So why Buddhism? I'd like to make an important point here stating that Buddhism is anything but a religion. The right question to ask would be why would you want to follow anything at all. You will find many answers here that will give you sources and some ...


7

Dignity in Buddhism is not built-in, it is to be earned. A realized person is respected because they deserve to be respected. If someone can control one's emotions, does not fall victim to one's weaknesses, has deep vision and wise judgement, flexible mind, and clear moral - then one can be respected. The word "arahant" ("arhat") is a Buddhist term for a ...


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