Name of the Buddha

A discussion on all aspects of Theravāda Buddhism
Post Reply
Keith
Posts: 104
Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 3:23 pm

Name of the Buddha

Post by Keith » Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:34 am

Do Theravadins call the Buddha 'Sakyamuni', or is this a Mahayana term? Historically, what is the earliest use of the name 'Sakyamuni'?

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 21735
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by retrofuturist » Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:36 am

Greetings Keith,

Can't comment on the origins of Sakyamuni (Sage of the Sun) but in the Suttas he may be called Gotama.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"It is natural that one who knows and sees things as they really are is disenchanted and dispassionate." (AN 10.2)

“Truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it.” (Flannery O'Connor)

Keith
Posts: 104
Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 3:23 pm

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by Keith » Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:34 am

Thank you Paul, but what about in Theravadin countries? Are there Theravada practices in which the name Sakyamuni is used? I ask because I'd never seen it in the suttas (unsurprisingly), yet in the GCSE RE syllabus the Buddha is referred to as Sakyamuni without any caveat as to whether this title is used only in Mahayana. There are other instances in the GCSE RE syllabus where Mahayana and Theravada terms are mixed up (Bodhisattva is a big one the syllabus is confused about). I want to be able to give the RE teachers at my school a little guidance, but I lack the authority or knowledge to do so, so I was hoping someone here could perhaps help.

Is the name "Sakyamuni' used by Theravadins in Asia, for example, even though it's not found in the Pali Canon?

User avatar
retrofuturist
Site Admin
Posts: 21735
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 9:52 pm
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by retrofuturist » Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:37 am

Greetings Keith,
Keith wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:34 am
Is the name "Sakyamuni' used by Theravadins in Asia, for example, even though it's not found in the Pali Canon?
Chances are yes, but only in a "cross-contaminated" kind of way, akin to how you might very well find Kwan Yin statues at a Theravada temple.

I remember Lyndon Taylor once telling us that in Cambodia, he heard the Mahayana teaching of "dharmakāya" given in a Theravada setting.

Metta,
Paul. :)
"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"It is natural that one who knows and sees things as they really are is disenchanted and dispassionate." (AN 10.2)

“Truth does not change according to our ability to stomach it.” (Flannery O'Connor)

User avatar
Grigoris
Posts: 422
Joined: Sun Mar 11, 2018 10:43 am

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by Grigoris » Tue Aug 06, 2019 12:41 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:37 am
Chances are yes, but only in a "cross-contaminated" kind of way, akin to how you might very well find Kwan Yin statues at a Theravada temple.
Really?

You consider Mahayana a micro-organism/bacteria that causes a harmful effect?

What about cross-pollination? Mutual exchange?
I remember Lyndon Taylor once telling us that in Cambodia, he heard the Mahayana teaching of "dharmakāya" given in a Theravada setting.

Metta,
Paul. :)
***Clutches at pearls***

Dhammakaya movement anybody?

Yogavacara?
ye dhammā hetuppabhavā tesaṁ hetuṁ tathāgato āha,
tesaṃca yo nirodho - evaṁvādī mahāsamaṇo.

Of those phenomena which arise from causes:
Those causes have been taught by the Tathāgata,
And their cessation too - thus proclaims the Great Ascetic.

chownah
Posts: 8376
Joined: Wed Aug 12, 2009 2:19 pm

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by chownah » Tue Aug 06, 2019 12:48 pm

retrofuturist wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:36 am
Greetings Keith,

Can't comment on the origins of Sakyamuni (Sage of the Sun) but in the Suttas he may be called Gotama.

Metta,
Paul. :)
The wikipedia article on "gautama buddha" suggests that sakyamuni came from his tribal origin (shakyan) and that it means sage of the shakyans.
chownah

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 4746
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Jaroen Dhamma Cave, Mae Wang Huai Rin, Lamphun

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by Dhammanando » Tue Aug 06, 2019 1:16 pm

Keith wrote:
Tue Aug 06, 2019 9:34 am
Do Theravadins call the Buddha 'Sakyamuni', or is this a Mahayana term? Historically, what is the earliest use of the name 'Sakyamuni'?
In the Pali Tipiṭaka Sakyamunī is a very minor epithet, occurring only twice in the Vinaya, once each in the Dīgha and Saṃyutta Nikāyas, and eight times in the Khuddaka Nikāya. The best known example of it is probably the fourth verse of the Ratanasutta:
khayaṃ virāgaṃ amataṃ paṇītaṃ
yadajjhagā sakyamunī samāhito
na tena dhammena samatthi kiñci
idampi dhamme ratanaṃ paṇītaṃ
etena saccena suvatthi hotu.

The waning out of lust, that wondrous state
of Deathlessness the Sakyan Sage attained
through calm and concentration of the mind—
nothing with that state can aught compare.
Yea, in the Dhamma shines this glorious gem:
By virtue of this truth, may blessing be!
(Khantipālo tr.)
In the Asian Theravāda cultural milieu I don't sense that Sakyamunī is a very widely known epithet, save among scholars, readers of Mahayana literature (e.g., Thai converts to Soka Gakkai use it all the time), and chanting enthusiasts (the Ratanasutta being a very popular paritta).

So, though the Mahayanists didn't invent 'Sakyamunī', they do appear to have originated the practice of using it as the Buddha Gotama's principal epithet.
“Keep to your own pastures, bhikkhus, walk in the haunts where your fathers roamed.
If ye thus walk in them, Māra will find no lodgement, Māra will find no foothold.”
— Cakkavattisīhanāda Sutta

User avatar
Aloka
Posts: 6256
Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2009 2:51 pm

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by Aloka » Tue Aug 06, 2019 1:22 pm

.

I just came across this book excerpt at the Tricyle website:

The Myth of the Historical Buddha, Is Shakyamuni more fiction than fact?

By Bernard Faure

https://tricycle.org/magazine/myth-historical-buddha/

This appears to be a PDF with the same title:

http://www.khamkoo.com/uploads/9/0/0/4/ ... ddhism.pdf

:shrug:


.

sentinel
Posts: 2293
Joined: Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:26 pm

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by sentinel » Tue Aug 06, 2019 5:00 pm

From Asoka pillar .
Screenshot_20190807-010622~01.png
( Buddha ) ( sakyamuni )
:coffee:

Keith
Posts: 104
Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 3:23 pm

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by Keith » Tue Aug 06, 2019 5:50 pm

Thank you, all. This is all very helpful.

User avatar
salayatananirodha
Posts: 567
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2018 1:34 am
Contact:

Re: Name of the Buddha

Post by salayatananirodha » Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:22 pm

https://suttacentral.net/dn32/en/anandajoti wrote:“May you revere Aṅgīrasa,
the glorious son of the Sakyans,
he who preached this Dhamma,
which is the dispelling of all suffering.
could this be what you're looking for?
16. 'In what has the world originated?' — so said the Yakkha Hemavata, — 'with what is the world intimate? by what is the world afflicted, after having grasped at what?' (167)

17. 'In six the world has originated, O Hemavata,' — so said Bhagavat, — 'with six it is intimate, by six the world is afflicted, after having grasped at six.' (168)

- Hemavatasutta


links:
https://www.ancient-buddhist-texts.net/index.htm
http://thaiforestwisdom.org/canonical-texts/
http://seeingthroughthenet.net/wp-conte ... _Heart.pdf
https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Aniccato, JohnK, Majestic-12 [Bot], SDC, seeker242 and 193 guests