Intended as a contribution to the study of religion and society, this book examines Buddhist monasticism in Myanmar. The book focuses on the Shwegyin, one of the most important but least understood monastic groups in the country. It illuminates key aspects of monastic and wider Burmese Buddhist thought and practice, and ultimately argues for the distinctiveness of elements of that thought and practice in comparison to the Buddhist cultures of Sri Lanka and Laos.
A lyrical translation of an inspired selection of verses from the earliest Buddhist monks and nuns. More than two thousand years ago, the earliest disciples of the Buddha put into verse their experiences on the spiritual journey--from their daily struggles to their spiritual realizations. Over time the verses were collected to form the Theragatha and Therigatha, the "Verses of Elder Monks" and "Verses of Elder Nuns" respectively. In Songs of the Sons and Daughters of the Buddha, renowned poets Andrew Schelling and Anne Waldman have translated the most poignant poems in these collections, bringing forth the visceral, immediate qualities that are often lost in more scholarly renditions. These selections reveal the fears, loves, mishaps, expectations, and joys of the early monks and nuns, when, struck by wild insight, they cried out the anguish or solace they knew in their lives.
The so-called ‘’shorter’’ Amitabha Sutra has been and is a foundation of spirituality for millions of Buddhist believers throughout the ages. The Sutra describes the magnificent Buddhist “heaven,” the Pure Land, where conditions are perfect for the practice of the Buddhist path. The sutra also describes the method for being reborn to that land, namely mindfulness of its Buddha, Amitabha. Tripitaka Master Hsuan Hua’s accompanying commentary amplifies the text and explains its main concepts by providing many interesting anecdotes involving the Buddha and his disciples. This volume, combining the Sutra with Master Hua’s commentary, succeeds not only in introducing the practice and thought of Pure Land Buddhism, also referred to as Mahayana Buddhism, but effectively presents a lucid introduction to this Buddhism as it is practiced today.
Based on close readings of more than twenty Buddhist texts written in China from the 5th to the 13th century, this book demonstrates that Buddhist authors crafted new models for family reproduction based on a mother-son style of filial piety, in contrast to the traditional father-son model.--NAN NÜ
Explores the relationship between literature and philosophy in classical and contemporary Buddhist texts. Can literature reveal reality? Is philosophical truth a literary artifice? How does the way we think affect what we can know? Buddhism has been grappling with these questions for centuries, and this book attempts to answer them by exploring the relationship between literature and philosophy across the classical and contemporary Buddhist worlds of India, Tibet, China, Japan, Korea, and North America. Written by leading scholars, the book examines literary texts composed over two millennia, ranging in form from lyric verse, narrative poetry, panegyric, hymn, and koan, to novel, hagiography, (secret) autobiography, autofiction, treatise, and sutra, all in sustained conversation with topics in metaphysics, ethics, aesthetics, and the philosophies of mind, language, literature, and religion. Interdisciplinary and cross-cultural, this book deliberately works across and against the boundaries separating three mainstays of humanistic pursuit—literature, philosophy, and religion—by focusing on the multiple relationships at play between content and form in works drawn from a truly diverse range of philosophical schools, literary genres, religious cultures, and historical eras. Overall, the book calls into question the very ways in which we do philosophy, study literature, and think about religious texts. It shows that Buddhist thought provides sophisticated responses to some of the perennial problems regarding how we find, create, and apply meaning—on the page, in the mind, and throughout our lives. Rafal K. Stepien is Assistant Professor in Comparative Religion at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.
The history of the Vietnam War has rarely been told from the Vietnamese perspective-and never by a leader of that country. In Buddha's Child, Nguyen Cao Ky reveals the remarkable story of his tumultuous tenure as Premier of South Vietnam, and offers unprecedented insight into the war's beginning, escalation, and heartbreaking end. A thirty-four year old pilot and Air Force commander, known for his fighter-pilot's moustache, flowing lavender scarf and his reputation as a ladies' man, Ky in 1965 agreed to lead South Vietnam after a series of coups had dangerously destabilized the nation. Ky's task was to unite a country riven by political, ethnic, and religious factions and undermined by corruption. With little experience in governing and none in international affairs, and while continuing to fly combat missions over Vietnam, Ky plunged into a war to save his homeland. He served as premier until 1967, continued to be active in the war after his resignation, and finally left Vietnam in 1975 during the fall of Saigon. Buddha's Child offers Ky's perspective on the crucial events and memorable images of the Vietnam War: the coup against and execution of President Diem; the self-immolation by the Buddhist monk, and the radical Buddhists' attempt to topple Ky's government; the bloody and pivotal Tet Offensive; the shooting of a Vietcong prisoner, captured in one of the war's most notorious photographs; the Paris Peace talks that sold out South Vietnam; and the last, desperate days of Saigon. In frank language, Ky discusses his own successes and failures as a leader and dramatically relates the progress of the war as it unfolded on the ground and behind the scenes-including anecdotes about Lyndon Johnson, Richard Nixon, William Westmoreland, Henry Cabot Lodge, William Colby, Henry Kissinger, and many others. Buddha's Child is a revelatory, fascinating account of a nation at war by a most unusual man.
This scholarly work offers a fascinating examination of the lore surrounding the life of Buddha. From his ancestry, birth, and youth to his final days, it chronicles Buddha's preaching, his 20 years' wandering, the establishment of rival schools of philosophy, and much more -- including thought-provoking perspectives on Buddhism as religion and philosophy.
This classic volume focuses on the life of the Buddha and the early history of his order, and includes the first translation of many works. The first part of the book consists of the translation and analysis of contained in the Tibetan Dulva or Vinaya-pitaka, and the second part includes chapters on the early history of Tibet and Khosan and an index of Tibetan words with their Sanskrit equivalents. The author, William Woodville Rockhill, (1854-1914) was a scholar-diplomat, linguist, ethnologist and Tibetan expert who was the first American to speak, read and write Tibetan and the first to explore the Tibetan highlands. While serving as the American Minister to China, he became an authority on Buddhism and a friend of the thirteenth Dalai Lama. His collection of Tibetan manuscripts, including those consulted for this volume, became the core of the Library of Congress's Tibetan holdings.
For young women in early South Asia, marriage was probably the most important event in their lives, as it largely determined their socioeconomic and religious future. Yet there has been little in the way of systematic examinations of the evidence on marriage customs among Buddhists of this time, and our understanding of the lives of early Buddhist women is still quite limited. This study uses ten stories from the Avadānaśataka, the collection of Buddhist narratives compiled from the second to fifth centuries CE, to examine the social landscape of early India. The author analyzes marital customs and the development of nuns’ hagiographies, while revealing regional variations of Buddhism in South Asia during this period.
Buddhas Wisdom is as broad as the ocean and His Spirit is full of great Compassion. Buddha has no form but manifests Himself in Exquisiteness and leads us with His whole heart of Compassion. This book is valuable because it contains the essence of the Buddhas teachings as recorded in over five thousand volumes. These teachings have been preserved and handed down for more than twenty-five hundred years extending beyond borders and racial barriers of the world. The words of Buddha contained in this book touch on all aspects of human life and bring meaning to it.
This work tells the story of Cambodians whose route takes them from refugee camps to California's inner-city and high-tech enclaves. We see these refugees becoming new citizen-subjects through a dual process of being made and self-making, balancing religious salvation and entrepreneurial values.