Theravada is a later sect?

A forum for members who wish to develop a deeper understanding of the Pali Canon and associated Commentaries, which for discussion purposes are both treated as authoritative.
User avatar
Assaji
Posts: 1631
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:24 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Assaji » Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:04 am

Caodemarte wrote:Now there is also a good argument that Sthaviravada is a back formation by A.K. Warder and that they were not a school or sect as such, but rather a general tendency among a loose grouping of like minded people.
Sthaviravada as an original early school is not just a back formation, it is a figment of imagination, made by Sanskritization of the word "Theravada" by some Buddhologists. During the Theravada-Mahasanghika split, Sanskrit didn't yet exist, so the Sanskrit word "Sthavira" couldn't have been used. It was coined only in the first centuries CE, during Sanskritization:

https://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=28943

Bakmoon
Posts: 637
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:14 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Bakmoon » Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:30 am

Dmytro wrote:
Caodemarte wrote:Now there is also a good argument that Sthaviravada is a back formation by A.K. Warder and that they were not a school or sect as such, but rather a general tendency among a loose grouping of like minded people.
Sthaviravada as an original early school is not just a back formation, it is a figment of imagination, made by Sanskritization of the word "Theravada" by some Buddhologists. During the Theravada-Mahasanghika split, Sanskrit didn't yet exist, so the Sanskrit word "Sthavira" couldn't have been used. It was coined only in the first centuries CE, during Sanskritization:

https://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=28943
Sanskrit most definately existed at the time. What language do you think the Vedas were composed in?

Yes, the term Sthaviravada is a backformation, but it is done for the sake of disambiguation. At the time of the first split, the distinctive doctrinal positions of the Theravada school hadn't been fleshed out yet, and the group gave birth to a number of other different schools such as the Sarvastivada, Dharmaguptaka, and Sammitiya groups. The Theravada school along with these other schools are all descended from an early group, so what is wrong with giving a technical name to such a group?
The non-doing of any evil,
The performance of what's skillful,
The cleansing of one's own mind:
This is the Buddhas' teaching.

User avatar
Assaji
Posts: 1631
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:24 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Assaji » Tue Jul 25, 2017 2:26 pm

Bakmoon wrote:Sanskrit most definately existed at the time. What language do you think the Vedas were composed in?
Vedic language. Ven. Dhammanando explained the difference:
https://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.p ... 20#p416041
Bakmoon wrote:Yes, the term Sthaviravada is a backformation, but it is done for the sake of disambiguation. At the time of the first split, the distinctive doctrinal positions of the Theravada school hadn't been fleshed out yet, and the group gave birth to a number of other different schools such as the Sarvastivada, Dharmaguptaka, and Sammitiya groups. The Theravada school along with these other schools are all descended from an early group, so what is wrong with giving a technical name to such a group?
Just one thing - it's a pure figment of imagination.

Indian authoritative texts (which I referenced above) acknowledge the continuity of ancient Theravada with Theravada of 8-12th centuries on Sri Lanka, giving it the same name - Ariya-Sthavira Nikaya. These texts were composed by the scholars who lived at the time, and knew the Sri Lankan schools very well.

Seems like schools that splitted of Theravada - Sarvastivada, Dharmaguptaka, and Sammitiya, - for some time continued to pretend that they are still Theravada, and were classified accordingly, bringing about some confusion. But by the 8th century things were eventually sorted out, and these schools were put out of "Ariya-Sthavira" category.

Mahasanghika seceded from Theravada on the Second Buddhist Council. Doctrinal tenets of Theravada were fleshed out in Katthavatthu on the Third Buddhist Council, just one century later. And modern Theravada firmly upholds these tenets. So I don't see any reason to artificially separate Theravada preserved on Sri Lanka from the Theravada of the Second Council.

Caodemarte
Posts: 947
Joined: Fri May 01, 2015 3:21 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Caodemarte » Tue Jul 25, 2017 3:16 pm

Bakmoon wrote:
Caodemarte wrote:From the cited discussion: Theravada claims direct descent from Sthaviravada and sometimes claims to be a pure continuation of Sthaviravada, with no credible evidence of either. However, this is impossible as the Sthaviravada had split up into several sub-schools by the time of Asoka. Hence there was no Sthaviravada as such by the putative 3rd Council, to which Thervada looked back to for inspiration.
I don't quite understand. What is problematic with saying that the Theravada school is one of the descendents of the Sthaviravada branch?
The reference cited says that there is no credible evidence of the claim of direct descent from Sthaviravada. Claims to be a pure continuation of Sthavirada from the putative 3rd Council on are impossible as Sthavirada had split up and did not exist as such by the time of that claimed event. You can claim that Sthavirada is one of the distant ancestors of Theravada if you have evidence of that. I suspect it to be true on logical grounds, but I, an admitted non-specialist, personally have not seen any evidence beyond partisan claims. Further details are available by examining the referenced text or the referenced discussion.

Nothing wrong with claiming (with evidence and reason) that you are a recreation of, share the same spirit with, or a spiritual continuation of something, but that is an ideological, mythological, or ahistorical claim which has different standards of evidence. For example, "Shakespeare inherited the soul of Homer." is obviously false or at best unproven if taken as statement on mere historical fact.

Bakmoon
Posts: 637
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:14 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Bakmoon » Tue Jul 25, 2017 5:47 pm

Dmytro wrote:Indian authoritative texts (which I referenced above) acknowledge the continuity of ancient Theravada with Theravada of 8-12th centuries on Sri Lanka, giving it the same name - Ariya-Sthavira Nikaya. These texts were composed by the scholars who lived at the time, and knew the Sri Lankan schools very well.
But is the Theravada school the only school that has the continuity with the group from the time of the second council? I don't think so.

Seems like schools that splitted of Theravada - Sarvastivada, Dharmaguptaka, and Sammitiya, - for some time continued to pretend that they are still Theravada, and were classified accordingly, bringing about some confusion. But by the 8th century things were eventually sorted out, and these schools were put out of "Ariya-Sthavira" category.[/quote]
These groups have never claimed to be part of the Theravada tradition in the sense of being part of the school well known in Sri Lanka at the time. But they did claim to be descended from the group from the second council, and that seems to be true. What is wrong with using the technical term Sthaviravada to unambiguously refer to the group at the time of the second council?
Dmytro wrote:Mahasanghika seceded from Theravada on the Second Buddhist Council. Doctrinal tenets of Theravada were fleshed out in Katthavatthu on the Third Buddhist Council, just one century later. And modern Theravada firmly upholds these tenets. So I don't see any reason to artificially separate Theravada preserved on Sri Lanka from the Theravada of the Second Council.
But did the Theravadins at the time of the second council uphold all of the tenets laid out in the Katthavatthu? Probably not, because those issues hadn't been debated yet, so it is misleading to refer to them with the term Theravada because they existed prior to the founding of the Theravada school as we know it.
Caodemarte wrote:The reference cited says that there is no credible evidence of the claim of direct descent from Sthaviravada. Claims to be a pure continuation of Sthavirada from the putative 3rd Council on are impossible as Sthavirada had split up and did not exist as such by the time of that claimed event. You can claim that Sthavirada is one of the distant ancestors of Theravada if you have evidence of that. I suspect it to be true on logical grounds, but I, an admitted non-specialist, personally have not seen any evidence beyond partisan claims. Further details are available by examining the referenced text or the referenced discussion.
The historical materials of the different Buddhist schools have historical information on how different groups split up. They don't always agree with each other on who exactly split off from who and in what order, but they agree on certain basics, such as there being a split between the Mahasamgikas and the Sthaviravadins, and the Mahasamgikas gave rise to groups like Lokottaravada and such, and the Sthaviravada group gave rise to other groups like Sarvastivada, Dharmaguptaka, Theravada, Sammitiya, etc... There's no evidence that the Theravada school came from the Mahasamgikas, so if they didn't come from the Sthaviravada group, where did they come from?
Caodemarte wrote:Nothing wrong with claiming (with evidence and reason) that you are a recreation of, share the same spirit with, or a spiritual continuation of something, but that is an ideological, mythological, or ahistorical claim which has different standards of evidence. For example, "Shakespeare inherited the soul of Homer." is obviously false or at best unproven if taken as statement on mere historical fact.
But in the case of the various Sthavira schools already mentioned (i.e. the Sarvastivada, Theravada, etc...) there is a clear historical continuity between the early Sthaviravada group and the various groups which developed out of it. It's not a case of just general inspiration.
The non-doing of any evil,
The performance of what's skillful,
The cleansing of one's own mind:
This is the Buddhas' teaching.

Caodemarte
Posts: 947
Joined: Fri May 01, 2015 3:21 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Caodemarte » Tue Jul 25, 2017 6:12 pm

Bakmoon wrote:
Caodemarte wrote:The reference cited says that there is no credible evidence of the claim of direct descent from Sthaviravada. Claims to be a pure continuation of Sthavirada from the putative 3rd Council on are impossible as Sthavirada had split up and did not exist as such by the time of that claimed event. You can claim that Sthavirada is one of the distant ancestors of Theravada if you have evidence of that. I suspect it to be true on logical grounds, but I, an admitted non-specialist, personally have not seen any evidence beyond partisan claims. Further details are available by examining the referenced text or the referenced discussion.
The historical materials of the different Buddhist schools have historical information on how different groups split up. They don't always agree with each other on who exactly split off from who and in what order, but they agree on certain basics, such as there being a split between the Mahasamgikas and the Sthaviravadins, and the Mahasamgikas gave rise to groups like Lokottaravada and such, and the Sthaviravada group gave rise to other groups like Sarvastivada, Dharmaguptaka, Theravada, Sammitiya, etc... There's no evidence that the Theravada school came from the Mahasamgikas, so if they didn't come from the Sthaviravada group, where did they come from?.....
But in the case of the various Sthavira schools already mentioned (i.e. the Sarvastivada, Theravada, etc...) there is a clear historical continuity between the early Sthaviravada group and the various groups which developed out of it. It's not a case of just general inspiration.

This is pretty murky area and I would not be confident in sharing any the assumptions here. There are obvious difficulties in relying on contradictory partisan literature or history. There is no reliable info establishing the claimed clear historical continuity. That does not mean that the claims are false; just that there is no convincing historical evidence at this point that such claims are historically true.

User avatar
Assaji
Posts: 1631
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:24 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Assaji » Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:30 pm

Bakmoon wrote:What is wrong with using the technical term Sthaviravada to unambiguously refer to the group at the time of the second council?
It's not just a technical term, - it's a Buddhological invention that skews the whole view of history, as you demonstrate.
Bakmoon wrote:But did the Theravadins at the time of the second council uphold all of the tenets laid out in the Katthavatthu? Probably not, because those issues hadn't been debated yet, so it is misleading to refer to them with the term Theravada because they existed prior to the founding of the Theravada school as we know it.
So let's invent a new "technical term" for each school after each new Council, - won't this be more precise? I would propose Ukrainian names, for the sake of disambiguation, since Sanskrit can be confusing.
Bakmoon wrote:The historical materials of the different Buddhist schools have historical information on how different groups split up. They don't always agree with each other on who exactly split off from who and in what order, but they agree on certain basics, such as there being a split between the Mahasamgikas and the Sthaviravadins, and the Mahasamgikas gave rise to groups like Lokottaravada and such, and the Sthaviravada group gave rise to other groups like Sarvastivada, Dharmaguptaka, Theravada, Sammitiya, etc...
Would you please provide a single ancient historical source describing, literally, "a split between the Mahasamgikas and the Sthaviravadins", etc.?

Historical materials do describe one kind of split - secession of Mahasamghika and other schools from Theravada (called "Ariya-Sthavira Nikaya" in medieval Sanskrit sources, and "Тхеравада" in modern Ukrainian ones).
There's no evidence that the Theravada school came from the Mahasamgikas, so if they didn't come from the Sthaviravada group, where did they come from?
From the First Council, obviously. They couldn't come out of the group invented by 20th-century Buddhologist.

Bakmoon
Posts: 637
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:14 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Bakmoon » Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:24 pm

Dmytro wrote:So let's invent a new "technical term" for each school after each new Council, - won't this be more precise? I would propose Ukrainian names, for the sake of disambiguation, since Sanskrit can be confusing.
We shouldn't make terms after every council. But we should do so after councils which produce schisms, because we need to be able to accurately say who we are talking about.
Would you please provide a single ancient historical source describing, literally, "a split between the Mahasamgikas and the Sthaviravadins", etc.?
They don't use the exact word Sthaviravada, and the term Sthaviravada doesn't refer to a school, but a general grouping and broad tradition.
Historical materials do describe one kind of split - secession of Mahasamghika and other schools from Theravada (called "Ariya-Sthavira Nikaya" in medieval Sanskrit sources, and "Тхеравада" in modern Ukrainian ones).
On what basis do we have for saying that the group after the second council schism should be called Theravada? It is because of the historical continuity between this group of people and the people who started calling themselves Theravadins, correct? The problem is that the Dharmaguptaka school and others have just as much historical continuity with this early group as we do, so you would have to say that the Dharmaguptaka school, the Sarvastivada school, the Bahusrutiya school, and the Sammitiya school are all Theravadins just as much as the Sri Lankans.
From the First Council, obviously. They couldn't come out of the group invented by 20th-century Buddhologist.
Can you show me any sources where the Monks after the first council called themselves Theravada? If not, then why is it you can call them a word they never used for themselves, but I can't call the group following the second council by a slight variation on a word they actually did use to describe themselves? That's a double standard.
The non-doing of any evil,
The performance of what's skillful,
The cleansing of one's own mind:
This is the Buddhas' teaching.

User avatar
Assaji
Posts: 1631
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:24 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Assaji » Sat Jul 29, 2017 5:30 pm

Bakmoon wrote:We shouldn't make terms after every council. But we should do so after councils which produce schisms, because we need to be able to accurately say who we are talking about.
In my opionion, names shouldn't be invented, - they should be based on historical sources.
Would you please provide a single ancient historical source describing, literally, "a split between the Mahasamgikas and the Sthaviravadins", etc.?
They don't use the exact word Sthaviravada, and the term Sthaviravada doesn't refer to a school, but a general grouping and broad tradition.
So, you can't substantiate your claim with any ancient historical source? Fine.

I prefer to discuss points whis can be supported by strong historical evidence, and I'm not interested in discussions on modern invented terms like "Sthaviravada" which various people define in various ways. Nothing can't be proved or disproved about their exact meaning, since they are just pure fiction.

For example, some people interpret Sthaviravada as:
Sthaviravāda literally means the "Teaching Of The Elders", was one of the two main movements in early Buddhism.

"The Elders" referred to Buddha 500 immediate disciples who had attained Arahantship (Enlightenment), they held the First Council, and unanimously decided not to modify any of Buddha Vinaya and Dhamma.

The Sthaviravāda faith survives today in the Theravāda tradition.

https://en.wikiversity.org/wiki/Buddhis ... av%C4%81da
On what basis do we have for saying that the group after the second council schism should be called Theravada? It is because of the historical continuity between this group of people and the people who started calling themselves Theravadins, correct? The problem is that the Dharmaguptaka school and others have just as much historical continuity with this early group as we do, so you would have to say that the Dharmaguptaka school, the Sarvastivada school, the Bahusrutiya school, and the Sammitiya school are all Theravadins just as much as the Sri Lankans.
As described by the authoritative ancient Indian historical sources I referred to above, it is Sri Lankans, and not other schools, which maintain continuity with the original Ariya Thera (Skt. Sthavira) group.
Can you show me any sources where the Monks after the first council called themselves Theravada? If not, then why is it you can call them a word they never used for themselves, but I can't call the group following the second council by a slight variation on a word they actually did use to describe themselves? That's a double standard.
Obviously, the Elders of the First Council didn't need to call themselves in any other way than just followers of the Buddha, since there were no other Buddhist groups or schools.

User avatar
Assaji
Posts: 1631
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2009 7:24 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Assaji » Sat Jul 29, 2017 5:33 pm

Talking about authoritative ancient historical sources - here's a great post from Dan Lusthaus:

From: "Dan Lusthaus"
List Editor: Franz Metcalf
Editor's Subject: Re: QUERY>Modern use of "Theravada" (Lusthaus)
Author's Subject: Re: QUERY>Modern use of "Theravada" (Skilling)
Date Written: Sat, 23 Dec 2006 09:23:59 -0800
Date Posted: Sun, 23 Dec 2006 12:23:59 -0500


Just to complicate things a bit, if we put aside the additional concern of using "Theravada" (or any sectarian name) as a designation for lay and/or geographic communities in contradistinction to simply naming a monastic lineage, then the Chinese tradition does seem to attest to the term Thera-school.

If we look, for instance, at the three Chinese translations of Vasumitra's "Development of the Different Schools," which, unfortunately does not survive in Sanskrit or an Indic language, we find the following:

1. Xuanzang (T.2031) uses 上座部 shangzuobu to designate the Theravada school. Shangzuo literally means "High-Seated," and is a common term for Thera/Sthavira. Bu means a "school" or "sect" or something of that sort, and can correspond to --vaada (e.g., Sarvaastivaada is commonly rendered in Chinese as yiqieyou bu 一切有部 "everything exists school"). Of course, this is a translation, not a transliteration or transcription.

2. Kumarajiva (T.2032; the Taisho [mis-]attributes this to Paramartha) does give us a transliteration: 體毘履 which in modern pronunciation would be: ti pi lü. Someone better versed in early fifth century Chinese phonetics may be able to suggest how that sounded back then. However it sounded, its initial consonant was a -t-, not -sth-. Kumarajiva explains the term with another common term for Thera/sthavira, laosu 老宿 which means "elder." His gloss is (此言老宿唯老宿人同會共出律部也). So its meaning is not in doubt.

3. Paramartha (T.2033), in his version of Vasumitra, offers two forms of the name, both being translations rather than transliterations:

大德眾 da de zhong (Great Venerables)
上座弟子部 shangzuo dizi bu (High-Seat and Disciples School)

The first name is meant to convey Thera as an honorific (which is one of the common uses, even in Chinese translations). The second is interesting, since while Xuanzang (as is typical in Chinese) only indicates the "High-seated Ones" (shangzuo), Paramartha adds dizi "disciples", i.e., the high-seated (i.e., teachers) and their disciples. So we are not yet including laypersons, but he is clearly indicating that the term is not meant to be restricted only to actual "elders."

This would suggest that by Vasumitra's day the term Thera (-vada) was already a common designation. His text, of course, is one of the classic sources for the narrative by which the first schism involved the splitting off of Mahasanghikas from the Theras, and that later Sarvastivada also split from the Theras. According to him, the Vatsiputriyas split from the Sarvastivada, and each continued to engender further schisms or sectarian splits. But Thera-vada (if we can take the Chinese bu as an equivalent of vaada) remains consistent. This, of course, is centuries before Buddhaghosa.


In addition, the Foguang Dictionary (p. 719c) lists some additional transliterations (I've added canonical citations):

1. 銅鍱部 modern pronunctiation = tong ye bu. [cf. T.54.2128.646c 一切經音義]

2. 他鞞羅部 modern pronunciation = ta bi luo bu. [cf. ibid, 784b; also Guanding's commentary on the MahaNirvana Sutra T.1767.194c, re: the initial schism:

佛滅度後一百餘年育王設會。上座shangzuo 他鞞羅tabiluo
立義。摩訶僧祇大眾mahasanghika
不同。分為二部。後上座部shangzuo bu...]

In other words, Guanding (Tiantai Zhiyi's disciple and editor, 6th-7th c) initially gives the name BOTH in translation and transliteration (High-seated + tabiluo), and then continues with the translated version as a bu/vaada.

3. 體毘履 ti pi lü (this was what Kumarajiva used, as noted above).

4. 他毘利 ta pi li [cf. T.55.2149.262a 大唐內典錄: 他毘利律(他毘利齊言宿德見僧祐錄)]

If we take the transliterations -- tabiluo, tipilü, and tapili -- and stress the middle syllable, while also taking bi/pi as an approximation for Indic -vi- , then, while they begin with an initial T- sound rather than an S- or Sth-, we get stha-VI-ra (sthavira).

So we may consider both terms (Thera- and Sthavira- "school") as attested in China at least since the end of the fourth century, and, if we can trust the Chinese representations of Vasumitra, in use in India four to five centuries earlier than that.

Dan Lusthaus
Boston

http://h-net.msu.edu/cgi-bin/logbrowse. ... dBnLtxuQgA

lostitude
Posts: 638
Joined: Tue Jul 14, 2015 1:02 am

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by lostitude » Sun Jul 30, 2017 12:35 pm

Hello, sorry if this is a bit off-topic, but:
robertk wrote:4. Out of compassion
for created beings, in order to establish the Faith for a
long time, he made, after the lapse of three months, when
the fourth month and the second beginning of the Vassa ^)
had arrived, the collection of the Dhamma.
What is the part in bold about?

Thanks.

User avatar
Dhammanando
Posts: 4758
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 10:44 pm
Location: Jaroen Dhamma Cave, Mae Wang Huai Rin, Lamphun

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Dhammanando » Sun Jul 30, 2017 3:24 pm

lostitude wrote:Hello, sorry if this is a bit off-topic, but:
robertk wrote:4. Out of compassion
for created beings, in order to establish the Faith for a
long time, he made, after the lapse of three months, when
the fourth month and the second beginning of the Vassa ^)
had arrived, the collection of the Dhamma.
What is the part in bold about?
Just a translator's idiosyncrasy. The Pali is pāṇīnam anukampāya, "out of pity for living [lit. "breathing"] beings."
“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
Coëmgenu
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:55 pm
Location: Whitby, Canada

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Coëmgenu » Sun Jul 30, 2017 5:40 pm

Bakmoon wrote:
Dmytro wrote:
Caodemarte wrote:Now there is also a good argument that Sthaviravada is a back formation by A.K. Warder and that they were not a school or sect as such, but rather a general tendency among a loose grouping of like minded people.
Sthaviravada as an original early school is not just a back formation, it is a figment of imagination, made by Sanskritization of the word "Theravada" by some Buddhologists. During the Theravada-Mahasanghika split, Sanskrit didn't yet exist, so the Sanskrit word "Sthavira" couldn't have been used. It was coined only in the first centuries CE, during Sanskritization:

https://www.dhammawheel.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=28943
Sanskrit most definately existed at the time. What language do you think the Vedas were composed in?
It seems there is a push to consider the Vedic language "not-Sanskrit".

As if we wanted to call Old English "not-English" (incidentally the divide between Old and Modern English is much much more severe than between Vedic and Classical Sanskrit).
如無為,如是難見、不動、不屈、不死、無漏、覆蔭、洲渚、濟渡、依止、擁護、不流轉、離熾焰、離燒然、流通、清涼、微妙、安隱、無病、無所有、涅槃。
Like this is the uncreated, like this is that which is difficult to realize, with no moving, no bending, no dying. Utterly lacking secretions and smothered in the dark, it is the island shore. Where there is ferrying, it is the crossing. It is dependency's ceasing, it is the end of circulating transmissions. It is the exhaustion of the flame, it is the ending of the burning. Flowing openly, pure and cool, with secret subtlety, and calm occultation, lacking ailment, lacking owning, nirvāṇa.
Asaṁskṛtadharmasūtra, Sermon on the Uncreated Phenomenon, T99.224b7, Saṁyuktāgama 890

User avatar
Coëmgenu
Posts: 1914
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2016 10:55 pm
Location: Whitby, Canada

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Coëmgenu » Sun Jul 30, 2017 6:02 pm

Bakmoon wrote:There's no evidence that the Theravada school came from the Mahasamgikas, so if they didn't come from the Sthaviravada group, where did they come from?
Theravāda was the island tradition of Sri Lanka for a long time, or at least that is the narrative I have inherited, we will see if it is pounced upon! :jawdrop: If it "came" from anywhere, probably there.

Theravāda is the last un-Mahāyānified school. That alone makes it very interesting, as there used to be more sects like Theravāda, but slightly different, but they all converted to Mahāyāna eventually except for Theravāda.
如無為,如是難見、不動、不屈、不死、無漏、覆蔭、洲渚、濟渡、依止、擁護、不流轉、離熾焰、離燒然、流通、清涼、微妙、安隱、無病、無所有、涅槃。
Like this is the uncreated, like this is that which is difficult to realize, with no moving, no bending, no dying. Utterly lacking secretions and smothered in the dark, it is the island shore. Where there is ferrying, it is the crossing. It is dependency's ceasing, it is the end of circulating transmissions. It is the exhaustion of the flame, it is the ending of the burning. Flowing openly, pure and cool, with secret subtlety, and calm occultation, lacking ailment, lacking owning, nirvāṇa.
Asaṁskṛtadharmasūtra, Sermon on the Uncreated Phenomenon, T99.224b7, Saṁyuktāgama 890

Caodemarte
Posts: 947
Joined: Fri May 01, 2015 3:21 pm

Re: Theravada is a later sect?

Post by Caodemarte » Sun Jul 30, 2017 6:50 pm

Coëmgenu wrote:
Bakmoon wrote:There's no evidence that the Theravada school came from the Mahasamgikas, so if they didn't come from the Sthaviravada group, where did they come from?
Theravāda was the island tradition of Sri Lanka for a long time, or at least that is the narrative I have inherited, we will see if it is pounced upon! :jawdrop: If it "came" from anywhere, probably there.

Theravāda is the last un-Mahāyānified school. That alone makes it very interesting, as there used to be more sects like Theravāda, but slightly different, but they all converted to Mahāyāna eventually except for Theravāda.

Would it not be truer to say that Tantric Buddhism was the island tradition, the Buddhism that Theravada (or rather Theravada with its court sponsors) replaced and suppressed on the island, before it became "the tradition for a long time?"

Post Reply

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 12 guests