Buddhism (Pali/Sanskrit: बौद्ध धर्मBuddha Dharma) is a religion and philosophy encompassing a variety of traditions, beliefs and practices, largely based on teachings attributed to Siddhartha Gautama, commonly known as the Buddha, "the awakened one".
The following outline is provided as an overview of, and topical guide to, Buddhism.
Dharmacakra, symbol of the Dharma, the Buddha's teaching of the path to enlightenment
Tathāgata — meaning "Thus Come One" and "Thus Gone One" simultaneously, the epithet the Buddha uses most often to refer to himself; occasionally it is used as a general designation for a person who has reached the highest attainment
Theravada — literally, "the Teaching of the Elders" or "the Ancient Teaching", it is the oldest surviving Buddhist school. It was founded in India. It is relatively conservative, and generally closer to early Buddhism, and for many centuries has been the predominant religion of Sri Lanka (now about 70% of the population) and most of continental Southeast Asia.
Mahayana — literally the "Great Vehicle", it is the largest school of Buddhism, and originated in India. The term is also used for classification of Buddhist philosophies and practice. According to the teachings of Mahāyāna traditions, "Mahāyāna" also refers to the path of seeking complete enlightenment for the benefit of all sentient beings, also called "Bodhisattvayāna", or the "Bodhisattva Vehicle."
Perfect in true knowledge and conduct (vijjā-caraṇa sampanno • vidyā-caraṇa-saṃpanna)
Sublime (sugato • sugata)
Knower of the worlds (lokavidū • loka-vid)
Incomparable leader of persons to be tamed (anuttaro purisa-damma-sārathi • puruṣa-damya-sārathi)
Teacher of devas and humans (satthā deva-manussānaṃ • śāsta deva-manuṣyāṇaṃ)
The Enlightened One (buddho)
The Blessed One (bhagavā • bhagavat)
Dhamma (Dharma) — the cosmic principle of truth, lawfulness, and virtue discovered, fathomed, and taught by the Buddha; the Buddha's teaching as an expression of that principle; the teaching that leads to enlightenment and liberation
Well expounded by the Blessed One (svākkhāto bhagavatā dhammo • svākhyāta)
Directly visible (sandiṭṭhiko • sāṃdṛṣṭika)
Timeless (akāliko • akālika)
Inviting one to come and see (ehi-passiko • ehipaśyika)
Worthy of application (opanayiko • avapraṇayika)
To be personally experienced by the wise (paccattaṃ veditabbo viññūhi • pratyātmaṃ veditavyo vijñaiḥ)
Saṅgha (Saṃgha) — the spiritual community, which is twofold (1) the monastic Saṅgha, the order of monks and nuns; and (2) the noble Saṅgha, the spiritual community of noble disciples who have reached the stages of world-transcending realization
Practicing the good way (supaṭipanno bhagavato sāvaka-saṅgho)
Practicing the straight way (ujupaṭipanno bhagavato sāvaka-saṅgho)
Practicing the true way (ñāyapaṭipanno bhagavato sāvaka-saṅgho)
Practicing the proper way (sāmīcipaṭipanno bhagavato sāvaka-saṅgho)
Worthy of gifts (āhuṇeyyo)
Worthy of hospitality (pāhuṇeyyo)
Worthy of offerings (dakkhiṇeyyo)
Worthy of reverential salutation (añjalikaraṇīyo)
The unsurpassed field of merit for the world (anuttaraṃ puññākkhettaṃ lokassā)
Four Noble Truths (Cattāri ariyasaccāni • Catvāri āryasatyāni)
Definition — volitional action, considered particularly as a moral force capable of producing, for the agent, results that correspond to the ethical quality of the action; thus good karma produces happiness, and bad karma produces suffering
Utu Niyama — Physical Inorganic Order (seasonal changes and climate), the natural law pertaining to physical objects and changes in the natural environment, such as the weather; the way flowers bloom in the day and fold up at night; the way soil, water and nutrients help a tree to grow; and the way things disintegrate and decompose. This perspective emphasizes the changes brought about by heat or temperature
Bīja Niyama — Physical Organic Order (laws of heredity), the natural law pertaining to heredity, which is best described in the adage, “as the seed, so the fruit”
Citta Niyama — Order of Mind and Psychic Law (will of mind), the natural law pertaining to the workings of the mind, the process of cognition of sense objects and the mental reactions to them
Kamma Niyama — Order of Acts and Results (consequences of one's actions), the natural law pertaining to human behavior, the process of the generation of action and its results. In essence, this is summarized in the words, “good deeds bring good results, bad deeds bring bad results”
Dhamma Niyama — Order of the Norm (nature's tendency to produce a perfect type), the natural law governing the relationship and interdependence of all things: the way all things arise, exist and then cease. All conditions are subject to change, are in a state of affliction and are not self: this is the Norm
Rebirth (Punabbhava • Punarbhava)
Saṃsāra — Lit., the "wandering," the round of rebirths without discoverable beginning, sustained by ignorance and craving
Parajika (defeats) — four rules entailing expulsion from the sangha for life
Sexual intercourse, that is, any voluntary sexual interaction between a bhikkhu and a living being, except for mouth-to-mouth intercourse which falls under the sanghadisesa
Stealing, that is, the robbery of anything worth more than 1/24 troy ounce of gold (as determined by local law.)
Intentionally bringing about the death of a human being, even if it is still an embryo — whether by killing the person, arranging for an assassin to kill the person, inciting the person to die, or describing the advantages of death
Deliberately lying to another person that one has attained a superior human state, such as claiming to be an arahant when one knows one is not, or claiming to have attained one of the jhanas when one knows one hasn't
Sanghadisesa — thirteen rules requiring an initial and subsequent meeting of the sangha (communal meetings)
Aniyata — two indefinite rules where a monk is accused of having committed an offence with a woman in a screened (enclosed) or private place by a lay person
Nissaggiya pacittiya — thirty rules entailing "confession with forfeiture"
Pacittiya — ninety-two rules entailing confession
Patidesaniya — four violations which must be verbally acknowledged
Sekhiyavatta — seventy-five rules of training, which are mainly about the deportment of a monk
Sāruppa — proper behavior
Bhojanapatisamyutta — food
Dhammadesanāpatisamyutta — teaching dhamma
Pakinnaka — miscellaneous
Adhikarana-samatha — seven rules for settlement of legal processes that concern monks only
Buddhānussati (Buddhanusmrti) — Recollection of the Buddha — fixing the mind with attentiveness and reflecting repeatedly on the glorious virtues and attributes of Buddha
Dhammānussati (Dharmanusmrti) — Recollection of the Dhamma — reflecting with serious attentiveness repeatedly on the virtues and qualities of Buddha's teachings and his doctrine
Saṅghānussati (Sanghanusmrti) — Recollection of the Saṅgha — fixing the mind strongly and repeatedly upon the rare attributes and sanctity of the Sangha
Sīlānussati — Recollection of virtue — reflecting seriously and repeatedly on the purification of one's own morality or sīla
Cāgānussati — Recollection of generosity — reflecting repeatedly on the mind's purity in the noble act of one's own dāna, charitableness and liberality
Devatānussati — Recollection of deities — reflecting with serious and repeated attention on one's own complete possession of the qualities of absolute faith (saddhā), morality (sīla), learning (suta), liberality (cāga) and wisdom (paññā) just as the devas have, to enable one to be reborn in the world of devas
Maraṇānussati — Mindfulness of death — reflecting repeatedly on the inevitability of death
Kāyagatāsati — Mindfulness of the body — reflecting earnestly and repeatedly on the impurity of the body which is composed of the detestable 32 constituents such as hair, body hair, nails, teeth, skin, etc.
Ānāpānasati — Mindfulness of breathing — repeated reflection on the inhaled and exhaled breath
Upasamānussati — Recollection of peace — reflecting repeatedly with serious attentiveness on the supreme spiritual blissful state of Nirvana
Nirvana (Nibbāna • Nirvāṇa) — the final goal of the Buddha's teaching; the unconditioned state beyond the round of rebirths, to be attained by the destruction of the defilements; Full Enlightenment or Awakening, the complete cessation of suffering
Parinirvana (Parinibbāna • Parinirvāṇa) — final passing away of an enlightened person
Sotāpanna — Stream-enterer (first stage of enlightenment) — one who has "opened the eye of the Dhamma", and is guaranteed enlightenment after no more than seven successive rebirths, having eradicated the first three fetters
The four factors leading to stream-entry
Association with superior persons
Hearing the true Dhamma
Practice in accordance with the Dhamma
The four factors of a stream-enterer
Possessing confirmed confidence in the Buddha
Possessing confirmed confidence in the Dhamma
Possessing confirmed confidence in the Sangha
Possessing moral virtues dear to the noble ones
Sakadagami — Once-returner (second stage of enlightenment) — will be reborn into the human world once more, before attaining enlightenment, having eradicated the first three fetters and attenuated greed, hatred, and delusion
Anāgāmi — Non-returner (third stage of enlightenment) — does not come back into human existence, or any lower world, after death, but is reborn in the "Pure Abodes", where he will attain Nirvāṇa, having eradicated the first five fetters
Arahant — "Worthy One", (see also: Arhat), a fully enlightened human being who has abandoned all ten fetters, and who upon decease (Parinibbāna) will not be reborn in any world, having wholly abandoned saṃsāra
Bodhisattva — one who has generated bodhicitta, the spontaneous wish to attain Buddhahood
Gautama Buddha — The Buddha, Siddhattha Gotama (Pali), Siddhārtha Gautama (Sanskrit), Śākyamuni (Sage of the Sakya clan), The Awakened One, The Enlightened One, The Blessed One, Tathāgata (Thus Come One, Thus Gone One)
Buddha's disciples and early Buddhists
Sāriputta — Chief disciple, "General of the Dhamma", foremost in wisdom
Uposatha — the Buddhist observance days, falling on the days of the full moon and new moon, when the monks gather to recite the Pātimokkha and lay people often visit monasteries and temples to undertake the eight precepts
Kathina — festival which comes at the end of Vassa
Bodhisatta — a future Buddha, one destined to attain unsurpassed perfect enlightenment; specifically, it is the term the Buddha uses to refer to himself in the period prior to his enlightenment, both in past lives and in his last life before he attained enlightenment
Borobudur — ninth-century Mahayana Buddhist Monument in Magelang, Indonesia
Brahmā — according to the brahmins, the supreme personal deity, but in the Buddha's teaching, a powerful deity who rules over a high divine state of existence called the brahma world; more generally, the word denotes the class of superior devas inhabiting the form realm
Buddhist Initiation Ritual — a public ordination ceremony wherein a lay student of Zen Buddhism receives certain Buddhist precepts, "a rite in which they publicly avow allegiance to 'The Three Refuges' of Buddhist practice: The Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha
^Cousins, L.S. (1996); Buswell (2003), Vol. I, p. 82; and, Keown & Prebish (2004), p. 107. See also, Gombrich (1988/2002), p. 32: “…[T]he best we can say is that [the Buddha] was probably Enlightened between 550 and 450, more likely later rather than earlier."
^ Williams (2000, pp. 6-7) writes: "As a matter of fact Buddhism in mainland India itself had all but ceased to exist by the thirteenth century CE, although by that time it had spread to Tibet, China, Japan, and Southeast Asia."  (Originally 1958), "Chronology," p. xxix: "c. 1000-1200: Buddhism disappears as [an] organized religious force in India." See also, Robinson & Johnson (1970/1982), pp. 100-1, 108 Fig. 1; and, Harvey (1990/2007), pp. 139-40.
^Keown, Damien (2003), A Dictionary of Buddhism: p. 38
^"The Mahayana, 'Great Vehicle' or 'Great Carriage' (for carrying all beings to nirvana), is also, and perhaps more correctly and accurately, known as the Bodhisattvayana, the bodhisattva's vehicle." - Warder, A.K. (3rd edn. 1999). Indian Buddhism: p.338
Luang Por Sumedho or Ajahn Sumedho (Thai: อาจารย์สุเมโธ) (born Robert Kan Jackman, July 27, 1934) is one of the senior Western representatives of the Thai forest tradition of Theravada Buddhism. He was abbot of Amaravati Buddhist Monastery, UK, from its consecration in 1984 until his retirement in 2010. Luang Por means Venerable Father (หลวงพ่อ), an honorific and term of affection in keeping with Thai custom; ajahn means teacher. A bhikkhu since 1967, Sumedho is considered a seminal figure in the transmission of the Buddha's teachings to the West.
Anagarika Shri Munindra (1915 – October 14, 2003), also called Munindraji by his disciples, was a Bengali vipassana meditation teacher, who taught many notable meditation teachers including Dipa Ma, Joseph Goldstein, Sharon Salzberg, and Surya Das. Anagarika simply means a practicing Buddhist who leads a nomadic life without attachment in order to focus on the dharma.
In Australia, Buddhism is a minority religion. According to the 2016 census, 2.4 percent of the total population of Australia identified as Buddhist. It was also the fastest-growing religion by percentage, having increased its number of adherents by 79 percent between the 1996 and 2001 censuses. The highest percentage of Buddhists in Australia is present in Christmas Island,where Buddhists constitute 18.1% of the total population according to the 2016 Census.Buddhism is the third largest religion in the country after Christianity and Islam.
Buddhism is the fourth largest religion in France, after Christianity, Islam, and Judaism.
France has over two hundred Buddhist meditation centers, including about twenty sizable retreat centers in rural areas. The Buddhist population mainly consists of Chinese, Vietnamese, and Korean immigrants, with a substantial minority of native French converts and "sympathizers." The rising popularity of Buddhism in France has been the subject of considerable discussion in the French media and academy in recent years.
Gyokuko Carlson (born Andrea Gass) is a Soto Zen roshi and abbess of Dharma Rain Zen Center in Portland, Oregon, United States. She was formerly the co-abbot along with her husband, the late Kyogen Carlson. Carlson and her husband practiced at Shasta Abbey when Jiyu Kennett was the abbess (and from whom she received Dharma transmission), leaving to found their own center in 1986 when celibacy became a requirement at Shasta Abbey. She has been a practitioner of Zen Buddhism for more than thirty years, and is a member of the American Zen Teachers Association.Gyokuko and Kyogen Carlson have come to be known as the major non-Shasta Abbey line in succession to Jiyu Kennett; their Zen center has become the largest Zen congregation in Oregon. Carlson's main teaching emphasis is the implementation of spiritual practice into daily life. Her family religious education program was developed from Unitarian Universalist practices, transformed by Buddhist principles. It is the largest Buddhist child education program in Oregon, and one of the largest and oldest in the United States.
Hugo Makibi Enomiya-Lassalle (11 November 1898 in Gut Externbrock near Nieheim, Westphalia – 7 July 1990 in Münster, Westphalia) was a German Jesuit priest and one of the foremost teachers to embrace both Roman Catholic Christianity and Zen Buddhism.
James Ishmael Ford (Zeno Myoun, Roshi) is an American Zen Buddhist priest and a retired Unitarian Universalist minister. He was born in Oakland, California on July 17, 1948. He earned a BA in psychology from Sonoma State University, as well as an MDiv and an MA in the Philosophy of Religion, both from the Pacific School of Religion.
The Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada are a group of temples and fellowships that are affiliated with the Nishi Hongan-ji of Kyoto, Japan, the mother temple of the Jodo Shinshu (True Pure Land) sect of Buddhism.
Groups follow the interpretation of the Buddha-Dharma according to Shinran Shonin (1173–1262), the founder of Jodo Shinshu Buddhism. Shinran promoted the principle of "dependent co-arising" as the basis for individual liberation. He attempted to understand the dharma in view of his own existence and thus derived the Nembutsu (recitation of "Namu Amida Butsu": Amitabha Buddha's name) teaching, which he emphasized as an expression of thanks and joy in realizing the interrelated nature of human existence.
Established in 1933, it is the oldest Buddhist organization in Canada.The national office for the Jodo Shinshu Buddhist Temples of Canada (formerly Buddhist Churches of Canada) is located in Richmond, British Columbia.
The Rochester Zen Center (RZC) is a Sōtō and Rinzai Zen Buddhist sangha in the Kapleau lineage, located in Rochester, New York and established in 1966 by Philip Kapleau. It is one of the oldest Zen centers in the United States.
Sanbo Kyodan (三宝教団, Sanbō Kyōdan, literally "Three Treasures Religious Organization") is a lay Zen sect derived from both the Soto (Caodong) and the Rinzai (Linji) traditions. It was renamed Sanbo-Zen International in 2014. The term Sanbo Kyodan has often been used to refer to the Harada-Yasutani zen lineage. However, a number of Yasutani’s students have started their own teaching lines that are independent from Sanbo Kyodan. Strictly speaking, Sanbo Kyodan refers only to the organization that is now known as Sanbo-Zen International.
Secular Buddhism—sometimes also referred to as agnostic Buddhism, Buddhist agnosticism, ignostic Buddhism, atheistic Buddhism, pragmatic Buddhism, Buddhist atheism, or Buddhist secularism—is a broad term for an emerging form of Buddhism and secular spirituality that is based on humanist, skeptical, and/or agnostic values, as well as pragmatism and (often) naturalism, rather than religious (or more specifically supernatural or paranormal) beliefs.
Secular Buddhists interpret the teachings of the Buddha and the Buddhist texts in a rationalist and often evidentialist manner, considering the historical and cultural contexts of the times in which the Buddha lived and the various suttas, sutras and tantras were written.
Within the framework of secular Buddhism, Buddhist doctrine may be stripped of any unspecified combination of various traditional beliefs that could be considered superstitious, or that cannot be tested through empirical research, namely: supernatural beings (such as devas, bodhisattvas, nāgas, pretas, Buddhas, etc.), merit and its transference, rebirth, and karma, Buddhist cosmology (including the existence of pure lands and hells, ), etc.
Traditional Buddhist ethics, such as conservative views regarding abortion, and human sexuality, may or may not be called into question as well. Some schools, especially Western Buddhist ones, take more progressive stances regarding social issues.
The Soto Zen Buddhist Association was formed in 1996 by American and Japanese Zen teachers in response to a perceived need to draw the various autonomous lineages of the North American Sōtō stream of Zen together for mutual support as well as the development of common training and ethical standards. With about one hundred fully transmitted priests, the SZBA now includes members from most of the Japanese-derived Sōtō Zen lineages in North America. The founding president was Tetsugen Bernard Glassman, followed by Sojun Mel Weitsman, Myogen Steve Stucky, Jishō Warner (the first female president), and Eido Frances Carney.
The Soto Zen Buddhist Association approved a document honoring the women ancestors in the Zen tradition at its biannual meeting on October 8th, 2010. Female ancestors, dating back 2,500 years from India, China, and Japan, are now being more regularly included in the curriculum, ritual, and training offered to Western Zen students.
White Plum Asanga, sometimes termed White Plum Sangha, is a Zen school in the Hakuyu Taizan Maezumi lineage, created by Hakuyu Taizan Maezumi. It consists of Maezumi's Dharma heirs and subsequent successors and students. A diverse organization spread across the United States and with a small presence in Europe, the White Plum Asanga
[I]ncludes teachers who represent the spectrum of styles to be found to American Zen—socially engaged Buddhism, family practice, Zen and the arts, secularized Zen, and progressive traditionalism."
Conceived of informally in 1979 by Maezumi and Tetsugen Bernard Glassman, the White Plum Asanga was named after Maezumi's father Baian Hakujun Dai-osho and then later incorporated in 1995 following Maezumi's death. Tetsugen Bernard Glassman was the White Plum Asanga's first President and his successor was Dennis Genpo Merzel. Following Merzel's term, in May 2007, Gerry Shishin Wick served as elected President of White Plum, until 2013 when Anne Seisen Saunders became the current president.
William Stoddart (born 25 June 1925, in Carstairs) is a Scottish physician, author and "spiritual traveller", who has written several books on the Perennial Philosophy and on comparative religion.He has been called a “master of synthesis” and is one of the important Perennialist writers in the present day. For many years he was assistant editor of the British journal Studies in Comparative Religion. He has translated into English, from the original French or German, several of the books of the perennialist masters Frithjof Schuon (1907–1998) and Titus Burckhardt (1908–1984).
Zen master is a somewhat vague English term that arose in the first half of the 20th century, sometimes used to refer to an individual who teaches Zen Buddhist meditation and practices, usually implying longtime study and subsequent authorization to teach and transmit the tradition themselves.
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