Download Buddhist Saints in India: A Study in Buddhist Values and by Reginald A. Ray PDF

By Reginald A. Ray

The difficulty of saints is a tricky and complex challenge in Buddhology. during this magisterial paintings, Ray bargains the 1st complete exam of the determine of the Buddhist saint in a variety of Indian Buddhist facts. Drawing on an in depth number of resources, Ray seeks to spot the "classical style" of the Buddhist saint, because it presents the presupposition for, and informs, different significant Buddhist saintly forms and subtypes. Discussing the character, dynamics, and background of Buddhist hagiography, he surveys the ascetic codes, conventions and traditions of Buddhist saints, and the cults either one of dwelling saints and of these who've "passed beyond." Ray lines the position of the saints in Indian Buddhist historical past, studying the beginnings of Buddhism and the foundation of Mahayana Buddhism.

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Mus 1935; Bareau 1969). i. , Keyes 1982; Carrithers 1983; Tambiah 1984). j. Cults of saints “ passed beyond’’ in stupas, images, etc. ; Dallapiccola 1980). k. , Bareau 1963 and 1970-71; Tambiah 1984; Migot 1954). 1. , Carrithers 1983; Tambiah 1984; Bunnag 1973). m. , Lamotte 1944-80; Reynolds 1981, 260-93; Couture 1988). 8. See Guy W elbon’s discussion of this issue (1968, 194-295). 9. , 1923) and T. W. , 1877), held that the Buddha originally taught and that Buddhism most essen­ tially is an ethical and/or philosophical teaching in which the mythic and cultic are second­ ary.

In relation to Buddhist monasticism in contemporary Thailand, Bunnag makes an observation that reflects the same view. After noting that according to Buddhist theory, only monks can legitimately aspire to nirvana, she continues: However, none o f the Thai monks to whom I spoke appeared to consider nirvana a relevant goal for which to strive; those who considered that [it was a relevant goal] . . believed that only after billions of years of tireless effort could they or their contemporaries achieve this state.

This, of course, is harmonious with a med­ 28 B U D D H IST SAINTS IN IN DIA itative preoccupation during the three months; as we shall see, the practice of “ holy silence” sometimes accompanies other practices carried out by Buddhists engaging in intensive meditation. In the Mahavagga, however, the reason given for this silence is that the renunciants in question wished to avoid conflicts with one another. The Buddha, disapproving of this kind of behavior, instituted the pravarana, wherein monks asked pardon of each other in public.

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