Tu Viện Quảng Đức105 Lynch Rd, Fawkner, Vic 3060. Australia. Tel: 9357 3544. quangduc@quangduc.com* Viện Chủ: HT Tâm Phương, Trụ Trì: TT Nguyên Tạng   

6. Community (Sangha)

28/10/201017:06(Xem: 2949)
6. Community (Sangha)

 

Buddha and Buddhism

 

6. Community (Sangha)


After the Buddha's death in 483 BC, the first Buddhist Council was led by Mahakassapa during which Ananda recited the discourses on the doctrine and Upali the rules of the discipline. These were then memorized and became the first two baskets of the Pitaka, the Sutta and Vinaya. Buddhism added abstinence from intoxicants to the four cardinal rules of abstaining from violence, stealing, lying, and sexual misconduct.

At Buddhist gatherings the Pratimokshasutra was recited, followed by confessions of monks who felt they had violated any of it. The four offenses that led to expulsion were having sexual intercourse, taking what was not given, taking of a human life or persuading anyone to commit suicide, and falsely boasting of supernatural attainments. The thirteen offenses deserving suspension included sexual misdemeanors, harming living beings by building a hut, falsely accusing another monk of a major offense, persisting in causing divisions in the community, and refusing to move when admonished by other monks. Other minor violations were eating between meals, attending secular entertainment, using unguents and jewelry, using high or luxurious beds, and handling money.

A century after the death of the Buddha the monks of Vaishali relaxed the rules on ten minor points, leading to contributions of money to the monks which was protested by the elder Yasa, who organized a council to condemn the changed rules. The easterners from Vaishali became known as Mahasanghikas, and the traditional westerners Theravada. According to tradition Theravada soon divided into eleven sects and Mahasanghikas into seven. Thus Buddhism was administered locally, though a monk could reside in any monastery irrespective of sect.

In the third century BC the Emperor Ashoka tried to unite the Buddhists, but he was stricken with remorse when his minister beheaded monks refusing to comply. Advised by the most learned monk of the time, Moggaliputta Tissa, all monks who did not follow the Theravada were dismissed from the community, and refutations of heretical views were published in the Kathavatthu of the Abhidamma basket. The number of sects was reduced, but others later denied that Ashoka ever held such a council. Regardless of whether that council was held, the support of Ashoka for Buddhism greatly expanded its influence so that it was even adopted and promoted by Greek rulers such as Menander.

The deification of the Buddha by the non-Theravadins led to the ideal of the Bodhisattva or future Buddha instead of the mere arhat. Bodhisattvas are enlightened persons, who postpone their own nirvana in order to help save all sentient creatures. This along with the conception of the pure mind (vijnana) eventually led to the "Greater Vehicle" or Mahayana Buddhism.

According to Edward Conze the earliest part of the Prajnaparamita Sutra is from about the first century BC.9 It explains that the Bodhisattva comprehending the truth does not retire into the blessed rest but dwells in wisdom to help others. In this wisdom one finds that all truths are empty. The Bodhisattva assured of future Buddhahood by previous Buddhas, whether absorbed in trance or not, knows the essential original nature. Seeing everything and everyone as illusion the Bodhisattva is not attached to anything, while guiding all beings to nirvana. The world is transcended in this practice of wisdom, the highest perfection. Later during the Christian era this form of Buddhism was to spread into China and throughout Asia.

Among the major religions Buddhism is unusual, like Jainism, in that it did not originally believe in God, though it recognized gods and goddesses and heavens and hells. Less stringent and more popular than the ascetic Jainism, it's emphasis on ethical behavior and the quest for enlightenment appealed to both those who renounced the world and laypeople. Though it also offered excellent individual models of ethical behavior and friendly attitudes, except in its religious community it was unable to convert society as a whole to its way of nonviolence any more than Jainism could.

Nevertheless in my opinion both Jainism and Buddhism even more provided outstanding examples of supremely ethical attitudes and actions. They were not afraid to criticize the priestly corruptions of Brahminism nor the violent ambitions of the ruling class (Kshatriyas). Mahavira and the Buddha were great teachers and leaders, and the non-theistic religions they founded nourished and enriched the spiritual tradition of India and encouraged ethical behavior among its people.

Perhaps the greatest contribution they both made was to make nonviolence a noble path in a culture where the word for noble (Aryan) had stood for racism based on color and the violent conquest of India. Their devotion to truthfulness and their ability to live simple lives with few material possessions as well as their chastity kept their lives relatively pure and free of entanglements and exploitation. Though surely not without their individual imperfections and occasional schisms, the good contributed to the world by these teachings and the lives of their best followers must have been substantial.

Notes

1. Samyutta Nikaya (author's version), 5:420.

2. Thomas, Edward J., The Life of the Buddha, p. 88.

3. Maha Parinibbana Suttanta 6:7 (156).

4. Brahma-Jala Sutta 1:9 (4).

5. Dhammapada (author's version), 2:1-3.

6. Ibid. 18:17-19.

7. Ibid. 25:20-22.

8. The Questions of King Milinda tr. T. W. Rhys Davids, 4:4:16.

9. The Perfection of Wisdom in Eight Thousand Lines & Its Verse Summary tr. Edward Conze, p. x.


 

Gửi ý kiến của bạn
Tắt
Telex
VNI
Tên của bạn
Email của bạn
13/06/2019(Xem: 3736)
Human rights roundtable of freedom of religion, sydney, June 11 2019, Here I'd like to share with you a brief summary of the roundtable on religious freedom hosted by the Australian Human Rights Commission. I attended on behalf of the ASA, along with Ven Thich Quang Ba. There were no reps from the FABC at this meeting.
03/05/2019(Xem: 4722)
The 16th United Nations Day Of Vesak Conference 2019 Main Theme: Buddhist Approach to Global Leadership & Shared Responsibilities for Sustainable Societies at Tam Chuc Pagoda, International Buddhist Convention Center Ba Sao, Ha Nam, Vietnam Sub-Theme: “Mindful Leadership for Sustainable Peace” Three Intertwined Paths to Leading for Sustainable Peace Phe Bach, Ed.D., Founder and CEO of C. Mindfulness LLC, Mira Loma High School, ILC, SJTA, SJUSD, California Teachers Association, USA. W. Edward Bureau, Ph.D., Associate Clinical Professor (Retired), Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA, USA Residence in Cochranville, PA, USA Introduction Sustainable peace anchors itself in mindfulness of the present, the people, and the microcosms in which we exist. Rather than existing as a static state, the peace is organic and dynamic, flowing itself around the vagaries of “unpeacefulness.” Thus, being a mindful leader begins with the practice of the Five Mindfulness Trainings (Five Precepts) and the N
01/04/2019(Xem: 3319)
“Arogya Parama Laba” – “Health is Wealth” ‘A very rare meritorious project..! In the joy of others’ Proposed Social Welfare Ambulance Service by Jambudveepa – Sri Lanka Buddhist Temple Sarnath – Varanasi India Dear Dhamma friends, To assist pilgrims who visit to pay Homage to sacred places Buddhist Temples, Societies, Institutions, staff members & villages in and around Sarnath, Varanasi. We are planning to offer an Ambulance service to meet their welfare needs. Which will include providing crutches, wheel chairs and seat walkers.
03/03/2019(Xem: 8225)
oin us in Melbourne for our annual AGM and Sangha get-together. Please click the button below to access more information, to download the flyer and to register for the ASA IN MELB 2019
24/02/2019(Xem: 5760)
2019 Sakyadhita International Conference will be in Australia Conference Theme: New Horizons: Buddhist Women Rising to the Challenges Location: The Fairmont Resort, Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia Dates: June 23rd - June 28th, 2019 Details visit: www.sakyadhita2019.org.au
09/02/2019(Xem: 6562)
The inaugural speech by Dr Tien Kieu, MLC, Victoria, Australia, 2019
29/01/2019(Xem: 8937)
HAPPY LUNAR NEW YEAR 2019 Year of the Pig Welcome to our LUNAR NEW YEAR EVE: Monday: 4/2/2019:From 6pm to mid-night), the program includes: Vegie Food Stalls , Prayers for everyone’s Ancestors , Repantance Ceremony, Cultural performances, Lion Dance & Firecrackers; Prayers for World Peace & Family Well-Being. All welcome, come & go at your own pleasure! Buddha Blessings & Our Best Wishes to you & your family
11/12/2018(Xem: 6565)
Short Dhamma Stories for Kids, It is my great pleasure being able to present a “Short Dhamma Story” for children. I have translated “Punchi Bana Katha” which was written in Sinhalese by the Venerable Welewatte Gunaratana Thero. My main object of this noble work is to develop children’s Dhamma knowledge and moral education. Most Venerable B. Sri Saranankara Adhikarana (Judiciary) Nayaka Maha Thera gave me his fullest support and encouraged me in my present work. So my respectful and sincere heartfelt thanks go to him. My very special thanks also goes to the President, Mr. G. Mervyn Weerasena and all members of the Siri Jayanti Association who pursed on my humble attempt. My special thanks goes to Venerable Welewatte Gunaratana Thero who gave me a proper consent to translate into English his Sinhalese book (Punci Bana Katha).
11/12/2018(Xem: 6359)
Buddhist path of liberation is indeed a process of purification of mind. Its preliminary step is found in the training of Sīla, which finds expression through right speech, right actions and right livelihood. The follower mainly to get rid of the mental defilements such as craving, aversion and ignorance practices these three steps of the Noble Eightfold path. It is evident that the wrong speech, wrong actions and wrong livelihood lead to the development of those defilements in the mind. Through the training of conduct (Sīla) most of the rough defilements can be restrained.
06/12/2018(Xem: 3199)
I once heard it said of man that the idea is to die young, as late as possible. At age 85, a favorite pastime of George H. W. Bush was firing up his boat, the Fidelity, and opening up the three 300-horsepower engines to fly, joyfully fly across the Atlantic, with the Secret Service boats straining to keep up. At age 90, George H. W. Bush parachuted out of an aircraft and landed on the grounds of St. Ann’s by the Sea in Kennebunkport, Maine, the church where his mom was married and where he worshipped often. Mother liked to say he chose the location just in case the chute didn’t open. In his 90s, he took great delight when his closest pal, James A. Baker, smuggled a bottle of Grey Goose vodka into his hospital room. Apparently it paired well with the steak Baker had delivered from Morton’s.
facebook youtube google-plus linkedin twitter blog
Nguyện đem công đức này, trang nghiêm Phật Tịnh Độ, trên đền bốn ơn nặng, dưới cứu khổ ba đường,
nếu có người thấy nghe, đều phát lòng Bồ Đề, hết một báo thân này, sinh qua cõi Cực Lạc.

May the Merit and virtue,accrued from this work, adorn the Buddhas pureland,
Repay the four great kindnesses above, andrelieve the suffering of those on the three paths below,
may those who see or hear of these efforts generates Bodhi Mind, spend their lives devoted to the Buddha Dharma,
the Land of Ultimate Bliss.

Quang Duc Buddhist Welfare Association of Victoria
Tu Viện Quảng Đức | Quang Duc Monastery
Senior Venerable Thich Tam Phuong | Senior Venerable Thich Nguyen Tang
Address: Quang Duc Monastery, 105 Lynch Road, Fawkner, Vic.3060 Australia
Tel: 61.03.9357 3544 ; Fax: 61.03.9357 3600
Website: http://www.quangduc.com ; http://www.tuvienquangduc.com.au (old)
Xin gửi Xin gửi bài mới và ý kiến đóng góp đến Ban Biên Tập qua địa chỉ:
quangduc@quangduc.com , tvquangduc@bigpond.com
VISITOR
102,616,016