Buddha: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) - download pdf or read online

By Michael Carrithers

ISBN-10: 0192854534

ISBN-13: 9780192854537

During this important creation, Michael Carrithers courses us during the complicated and occasionally conflicting info that Buddhist texts provide us concerning the lifestyles and educating of the Buddha. He discusses the social and political history of India within the Buddha's time and lines the advance of his proposal. He additionally assesses the fast and frequent assimilation of Buddhism and its modern relevance. Well-paced and informative, this creation will enlighten not just those that learn Buddhism and comparative faith yet someone intrigued through the striking philosophy of 1 of the best spiritual thinkers.

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`admirably well-paced and informative.' Galen Strawson, Sunday instances

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Additional info for Buddha: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

Example text

Their answer is found in both Buddhist and Jain sources, and it is so fundamental to the ascetics’ point of view that it must have been already present, in rough form at least, when the Buddha arrived on the scene. The Buddha The Buddha expressed this common view in an especially clear form in dialogue with a Brahman (D I no. 4). ’, for according to the estates scheme the Brahman is just that. In reply the Brahman claims that he and his fellows hold their elevated position by virtue of a number of qualities which they enjoy simultaneously.

The straightness of the back and the folded legs foster a degree of wakefulness which could not be obtained in a more comfortable position, such as lying down. One then concentrates on some object, in some versions at first a physical object but eventually in almost every case a mental image, a single sensation, or perhaps a silently repeated sound. In an Upanishadic version one might perhaps have concentrated on the Self dwelling in the heart, ‘smaller than a mustard seed and golden’ (C III 14).

Nor by indulgence in speculation . . nor because you honour [the word of] an ascetic; but know for yourselves’ (A I 189). The Buddha’s monks were not to speculate about the future or the past, or about such recondite questions as the beginning or end of the world. They were to limit their concern and efforts to one thing, the arising and cessation of suffering within ‘this fathom-long carcass’. There are many possible kinds of knowledge, asserted the Buddha, but only those touching this immediate experience were of relevance to his disciples in their search for liberation.

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Buddha: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Michael Carrithers


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