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Buddhism

1. Siddhartha Gautama
a.
b.
c.
d.
e.

Birth/prophecy
Four Passing Sights
Four Councils
Dies at age 80 from food poisoning
Doesnt leave any writings

Dharma= Teachings of Buddha


Purpose of Four Councils
Unify Buddhist Scriptures
Codify Monastic Disciplines
Expansion of Buddhism
Separation of Buddhism into:
Theravada
Mahayana
Zen Buddhism- japan
Vajranyan Buddhism in Tibet

Sacred Stories & Sacred


Scriptures
Scriptures of Theravada Buddhism:
Tripitaka also known as Pali Canon
Tripitaka- the three baskets
(contains the words of the Buddha

Scriptures of Mahayana
Buddhism
Lotus Sutra is most important text
Lotus Sutra- the final teachings of
the Buddha which makes
enlightenment available to everyone
Perfection of wisdom- a treatise
on how to achieve the perfection of
wisdom of a bodhisattva

Scriptures of Vajrayana
Buddhism
Tantric Scriptures = From India or
China; writings concerned with rituals
and meditations to gain
enlightenment
Mandala= sacred geometric symbols
of universe
Mantra= sacred word that aids
meditation
Tibetan Book of the Dead= most
popular

Beliefs and Practices


(Dharma)
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.

Four noble truths


Noble eightfold path
Three marks of existence
Five precepts
Nirvana

The Four Noble Truths


Dukkha(suffering or dis-ease of life)
Trauma of birth, sickness, aging,
process, fear of death, losses

Tanha(desire or attachments)
This is the root of all dis-ease

Nirodha(the cessation of suffering)


Magga(the cure to the end of
suffering)
The eightfold path

The Eightfold Path

Right
Right
Right
Right
Right
Right
Right
Right

thought
understanding
speech
conduct
livelihood
effort
mindfulness
concentration

Morality- right speech, right


livelihood, right conduct
Meditation right effort right
mindfulness and right concentration
Wisdom- right understanding, right
thought

The Three marks of


existence
Dukkha (Suffering)
Life has become disordered

Anicca (impermanence)
The realization of change

Anatma (no-self)
All things change, including the Self.
There is no permanent self although
people act like there is

The Five Precepts


All Buddhists (Sangha) are to refrain
from
Destroying life
Dont Steal
Sexual misconduct
No lies
Avoid intoxicants

Nirvana
Nirvana means to blow outthe
flames of desire
It is possible to achieve nirvana in
this lifetime
Selfishness brings about bad karma,
which keeps the individuals in
samsara

Sacred Time

Offerings to Buddha
Meditation- most important
Puja
Visakha Buddha Day

Celebrating Sangha
Celebrating the Buddhist lifecycle

Puja
Worship at home or in monasteries
Offerings are made to revere, respect and honor the Buddha
Flowers- initially offering beauty, they whiter and die,
pointing to impermanence
Fruit- a reminder of what good conduct brings
Water- A sign of purity, which is the example of the Buddha
and goal for all
Incense- Its sweet odor is a reminder of what good conduct
brings
Candlelight- Dispels darkness of delusion and ignorance
Shoes are removed as a sign of respect and gratitude to the
Buddha
Prayers, Five Precepts, Three Jewels may be recited

Sacred Places and Sacred


Spaces
Temples- used for religious devotions
and to enshrine images of Buddhas
Pagodas-large stupas
Stupas- hold important relics of the
Buddha or other important figures

Places of Pilgrimage
Lumbini Gardens- traditional site of
the birth of Siddhartha Gautama
near Nepal
Bodh Gaya- The place Gautama
became enlightened
Sarnath- where Gautama preached
his first sermon about the Four Noble
Truths
Kushinara- Traditional place of the
death of Gautama

Divisions of Buddhism
Hinayana / Theravada
Mahayana
Vajrayana / Tibetan
Chan / Zen

Theravada way of the Elders


Follows Tropitaka- original doctrines of the Buddha
Monastic
Wisdom is important virtue
Arhat= attains Nirvana in present life but only for
those who heard teachings of Buddha

Mahayana Buddhism-Largest group


Focus on life of the Buddha
Ultimate virtue is compassion
Ideal person is bodhisattva one whose
essence is perfect wisdom because they
have attained nirvana and guide others
Practice centers on ritual and meditation

Tibetan / Vajrayana

Vehicle of the Diamond


Practices in Tibet
Official hierarchy: Iamas teachers
Goal is to fight desires by focusing on good
desires through:
Mantras: monotonous, hypnotic, repeated
phrases
Mudras: choreographed hand movements
Mandala and thangkas: artistic symbols used
to excite the senses

Zen / Chan Buddhism


Quietude
Began in China in 520 CE with the monk,
Bodhidharma
Preaches acceptance of the world as it is with
no preconceived notions
Focus on meditation and present moment living
Scriptures contain almost illogical sayings
known as KOANS: what is the sound of one
hand clapping? (Goal is to shock the mind out
of its everyday patterns of thought)

Buddhism through Catholic Lens The


Buddha and Jesus Christ
Similarities
Unusual births
Both had followers
Forgave the person that killed them
Faced three temptations
Few Christians in Palestine/Israel
Few Buddhists in India

Differences
Jesus was God
Buddha: only human
Born into royalty/ Married
Message: how to end suffering

Jesus: human and divine


Born of humble means of royal lineage/not married
Message: Kingdom of God

Suffering
Hinduism
Bad Karma
Follow Dharma

Buddhism
Desire
Eightfold path

Catholicism
Sin/misuse of free will
Part of life, trust God, untie with Jesus