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navyyata

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navyyata

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Posted: 11 September 2013 at 11:25pm | IP Logged
Originally posted by RoseFairy

Originally posted by navyyata

dear people... Lord Gautam Buddha was born in Nepal not somewhere else..
donnn say somewhere else and keep identity of Lord Buddha in risk..


yes Lord Buddha was born in Nepal even Lumbini Park where sidhartha was born is heritage there

don't know why the show didn't mention Nepal's name


Even I was wondering about it..
whatever it is... if the show is showing historical events then historical facts and places should also be mentioned.
One of the Indian actress (don want to mention name) in her recent interview, clamied India to be place of birth of...
(well i think she should learn history..)
I am serious this kind of saying might risk Lord Buddha's existance in future. And will he be happy or praised seeing his birth place being ignored???
He was born in Nepal, Lumbini and got Enlighted in India ...Bouthgaya...
CV's respect his identity

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RoseFairy

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Posted: 12 September 2013 at 8:02am | IP Logged
hey dear as its history and philosophy discussion corner please share knowledgeable post about him

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RoseFairy

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Buddhist councils











Lists and numbering of Buddhist councils vary between and even within schools. The numbering here is normal in Western writings.


First Buddhist council (c. 400 BCE)

According to the scriptures of all Buddhist schools, the first Buddhist Council was held soon after the mahaparinirvana of the Buddha, dated by the majority of recent scholars around 400 BCE, under the patronage of king Ajatasatru with the monk Mahakasyapa presiding, at Sattapanni caves Rajgriha (now Rajgir). Its objective was to preserve the Buddha's sayings (suttas) and the monastic discipline or rules (Vinaya). The Suttas were recited by Ananda, and the Vinaya was recited by Upali. According to some sources, the Abhidhamma Pitaka, or its matika, was also included. Also the Sangha made the unanimous decision to keep all the rules of the Vinaya, even the lesser and minor rules.

Second Buddhist council (c. 4th century BCE)

The historical records for the so-called "Second Buddhist Council" derive primarily from the canonical Vinayas of various schools (Theravda, Sarvstivda, Mlasarvstivda, Mahsanghika, Dharmaguptaka, and Mahsaka). In most cases, these accounts are found at the end of the Skandhaka portion of the Vinaya. While inevitably disagreeing on points of details, they nevertheless agree on roughly the following.

About 100 or 110 years after the Buddha's Nirvana, a monk called Yasa, when visiting Vesl, noticed a number of lax practices among the local monks. A list of "ten points" is given; the most important was that the Vesl monks, known as Vajjiputtakas, consented to accepting money. Considerable controversy erupted when Yasa refused to follow this practice. He was prosecuted by the Vajjiputtakas, and defended himself by quoting in public a number of canonical passages condemning the use of money by monastics. Wishing to settle the matter, he gathered support from monks of other regions, mainly to the west and south. A group consented to go to Vesli to settle the matter. After considerable maneuvering, a meeting was held, attended by 700 monks. A council of eight was appointed to consider the matter. This consisted of four locals and four 'westerners'; but some of the locals had already been secretly won over to the westerners' case[citation needed]. Each of the ten points was referred to various canonical precedents. The committee found against the Vajjiputtaka monks. They presented this finding to the assembly, who consented unanimously. The canonical accounts end there.

Virtually all scholars agree that this second council was a historical event.[1]

Third Buddhist council (c. 247 BCE)

In striking contrast to the uniform accounts of the Second Council, there are records of several possible "Third Councils". These different versions function to authorize the founding of one particular school or other.

According to the Theravda commentaries and chronicles, the Third Buddhist Council was convened by the Mauryan king Ashoka at Ptaliputra (today's Patna), under the leadership of the monk Moggaliputta Tissa. Its objective was to purify the Buddhist movement, particularly from opportunistic factions which had been attracted by the royal patronage. The king asked the suspect monks what the Buddha taught, and they claimed he taught views such as eternalism, etc., which are condemned in the canonical Brahmajala Sutta. He asked the virtuous monks, and they replied that the Buddha was a "Teacher of Analysis" (Vibhajjavdin), an answer that was confirmed by Moggaliputta Tissa. The Council proceeded to recite the scriptures once more, adding to the canon Moggaliputta Tissa's own book, the Kathavatthu, a discussion of various dissenting Buddhist views now contained in the Theravda Abhidhamma Pitaka.

Also, emissaries were sent to various countries in order to spread Buddhism, as far as the Greek kingdoms in the West (in particular the neighboring Greco-Bactrian Kingdom, and possibly even farther according to the inscriptions left on stone pillars by Ashoka). According to Frauwallner (Frauwallner, 1956), several of these missionaries were responsible for founding schools in various parts of India: Majjhantika was the father of the Kasmiri Sarvastivdins; Yonaka Dhammarakkhita may have been the founder of the Dharmaguptaka school; Mahdeva, sent to the Mahisa country may have been the founder of the Mahisasakas; and several teachers travelled to the Himalayas where they founded the Haimavata school, including a certain Kassapagotta, who may be connected with the Kasyapiyas. Relics of some of the Haimavata monks have been excavated at Vedisa in central India.[2] The most famous of the missionaries, and the main focus of interest for these Theravada histories, is Mahinda, who travelled to Sri Lanka where he founded the school we now know as Theravada.

The Theravda's own Dipavamsa records a quite different Council called the "Great Recital" (Mahsangiti), which it claims was held by the reformed Vajjiputtakas following their defeat at the Second council. The Dipavamsa criticizes the Mahasangitikas (who are the same as the Mahasanghikas) for rejecting various texts as non-canonical: the [Vinaya] Parivra; the 6 books of the Abhidhamma; the Patisambhida; the Niddesa; part of the Jatakas; and some verses. (Dipavamsa 76, 82)

The Mahsanghika, for their part, remember things differently: they allege, in the Sriputraparipriccha that there was an attempt to unduly expand the old Vinaya. The Mahasanghikas' own vinaya gives essentially the same account of the Second Council as the others, i.e. they were on the same side.

An entirely different account of Mahsanghika origins is found in the works of the Sarvstivda group of schools. Vasumitra tells of a dispute in Ptaliputra at the time of Ashoka over five heretical points: that an Arahant can have nocturnal emission; that he can have doubts; that he can be taught by another; that he can lack knowledge; and that the path can be aroused by crying "What suffering!". These same points are discussed and condemned in Moggaliputta Tissa's Kathavatthu, but there is no mention of this Council in Theravadin sources. The later Mahavibhasa develops this story into a lurid smear campaign against the Mahasanghika founder, who it identifies as "Mahadeva". This version of events emphasizes the purity of the Kasmiri Sarvastivadins, who are portrayed as descended from the arahants who fled persecution due to Mahadeva.

The Fourth Buddhist Councils

By the time of the Fourth Buddhist councils, Buddhism had long since splintered into different schools. The Theravada had a Fourth Buddhist Council in the first century BCE in Tambapanni, i.e. Sri Lanka, at Aloka Lena now Alu Vihara during the time of King Vattagamani-Abaya. However it should be clarified that an anonymous local chieftain had given patronage and not the king, since he was a firm follower of the Abayagir school (a Mahayana Sect.). In fact one of the main reasons for the Council was the cruel policy the king held against the Mahavihara Priests who were Theravadians who were once attacked at the Mahavihara Premises killing many and driving away the others. The temple was destroyed and in its place a Mahayana Temple was built. The other main reasons for the Council were the unstable political situation within the country due to constant invasions which lead the king himself to flee several times and also severe famine. It is said to have been devoted to committing the entire Pali Canon to writing, which had previously been preserved by memory. No mention had been made as to who led this Council, for which the approximate cause would have been the deteriorating status of Buddhism then, and the collective effort by the priesthood to preserve the religion in its purest form therefore not needing a leader(only the fact that the Mahavihara priesthood i.e. Theravada school took part in this recital and compilation had been mentioned).

Another Fourth Buddhist Council was held in the Sarvastivada tradition, said to have been convened by the Kushan emperor Kanishka, in 78 AD at Jalandhar or in Kashmir. It is said that Kanishka gathered five hundred Bhikkhus in Kashmir, headed by Vasumitra, to systematize the Sarvastivadin Abhidharma texts, which were translated form earlier Prakrit vernacular languages (such as Gandhari in Kharosthi script) into the classical language of Sanskrit. It is said that during the council three hundred thousand verses and over nine million statements were compiled, a process which took twelve years to complete. Although the Sarvastivada are no longer extant as an independent school, its traditions were inherited by the Mahayana tradition. The late Monseigneur Professor Etienne Lamotte, an eminent Buddhologist, held that Kanishka's Council was fictitious.[3] However, David Snellgrove, another eminent Buddhologist, considers the Theravada account of the Third Council and the Sarvastivada account of the Fourth Council "equally tendentious," illustrating the uncertain veracity of much of these histories.[4]

Theravada Buddhist council in 1871 (Fifth Buddhist council)

Another Buddhist Council, this time presided by Theravada monks took place in Mandalay, Burma, in 1871 in the reign of King Mindon. The chief objective of this meeting was to recite all the teachings of the Buddha and examine them in minute detail to see if any of them had been altered, distorted or dropped. It was presided over by three Elders, the Venerable Mahathera Jagarabhivamsa, the Venerable Narindabhidhaja, and the Venerable Mahathera Sumangalasami in the company of some two thousand four hundred monks (2,400). Their joint Dhamma recitation lasted for five months. It was also the work of this council to approve the entire Tripitaka inscribed for posterity on seven hundred and twenty-nine marble slabs in the Burmese script before its recitation.[5] This monumental task was done by the monks and many skilled craftsmen who upon completion of each slab had them housed in beautiful miniature 'pitaka' pagodas on a special site in the grounds of King Mindon's Kuthodaw Pagoda at the foot of Mandalay Hill where it and the so called 'largest book in the world', stands to this day. This Council is not generally recognized outside Burma.[6]

Theravada Buddhist council in 1954 (Sixth Buddhist Council)

The Sixth Council was called at Kaba Aye in Yangon (formerly Rangoon) in 1954, 83 years after the fifth one was held in Mandalay. It was sponsored by the Burmese Government led by the then Prime Minister, the Honourable U Nu. He authorized the construction of the Maha Passana Guha, the "great cave", an artificial cave very much like India's Sattapanni Cave where the first Buddhist Council had been held. Upon its completion The Council met on 17 May 1954.

As in the case of the preceding councils, its first objective was to affirm and preserve the genuine Dhamma and Vinaya. However it was unique insofar as the monks who took part in it came from eight countries. These two thousand five hundred learned Theravada monks came from Myanmar, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, India, and Nepal. Germany can only be counted as the nationality of the only two western monks in attendance: Venerable Nyanatiloka Mahathera and Venerable Nyanaponika Thera. They both were invited from Sri Lanka. The late Venerable Mahasi Sayadaw was appointed the noble task of asking the required questions about the Dhamma of the Venerable Bhadanta Vicittasarabhivamsa who answered all of them learnedly and satisfactorily. By the time this council met all the participating countries had had the Pali Tripiaka rendered into their native scripts, with the exception of India.[7]

The traditional recitation of the Buddhist Scriptures took two years and the Tripiaka and its allied literature in all the scripts were painstakingly examined and their differences noted down and the necessary corrections made and all the versions were then collated. It was found that there was not much difference in the content of any of the texts. Finally, after the Council had officially approved them, all of the books of the Tipitaka and their commentaries were prepared for printing on modern presses and published in the Burmese script. This notable achievement was made possible through the dedicated efforts of the two thousand five hundred monks and numerous lay people. Their work came to an end on the evening of Vesak, 24 May 1956, exactly two and a half millennia after Buddha's Parinibbana, according to the traditional Theravada dating.



Edited by RoseFairy - 12 September 2013 at 8:08am

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RoseFairy

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Posted: 12 September 2013 at 8:11am | IP Logged

First Buddhist council


Pipal.jpg
Early
Buddhism
Scriptures

Gandhran texts
gamas
Pali Canon

Councils

1st Council
2nd Council
3rd Council
4th Council

Schools

First Sangha
"" Mahsghika
" Ekavyvahrika
" Lokottaravda
" Bahurutya
" Prajaptivda
"" Caitika
"" Sthaviravda
" Mahsaka
" Dharmaguptaka
" Kyapya
" Sarvstivda
"" Vibhajyavda
"" Theravda

The First Buddhist council was convened in the year following the Buddha's Parinibbana,[1] which is 543-542 BCE according to Theravada tradition, at various earlier dates according to certain Mahayana traditions, and various later dates according to certain Western estimates.[2] According to late commentarial accounts, King Ajatashatru (Sanskrit ) sponsored the council. Tradition holds that the Council was held in a hall erected by Ajatasattu outside the Sattaparnaguha (Pali: Sattapanniguha)or Saptaparni Cave in Rajgir, three months after the Buddha had attained "Parinibbhana" (i.e. died). Detailed accounts of the council can be found in the Khandhaka sections of the canonical Vinayas.

According to this record the incident which prompted the Elder Mahakassapa to call this meeting was his hearing a disparaging remark about the strict rule of life for monks. The monk Subhadda, who had ordained late in life, upon hearing that the Buddha had expired, voiced his resentment at having to abide by all the rules for monks laid down by the Buddha. Many monks lamented the passing of the Buddha and were deeply grieved but Subhadda spoke up to show happiness and relief that Buddha was gone.

And Subhadda, the late-received one, said to the Bhikkhus: "Enough, Sirs! Weep not, neither lament! We are well rid of the great Samana. We used to be annoyed by being told, 'This beseems you, this beseems you not.' But now we shall be able to do whatever we like; and what we do not like, that we shall not have to do."[3]

Mahakassapa was alarmed by his remark and feared that the Dhamma and the Vinaya might be corrupted and not survive intact if other monks were to behave like Subhadda and interpret the Dhamma and the Vinaya rules as they pleased. To avoid this he decided that the Dhamma must be preserved and protected. To this end after gaining the Sangha's approval he called to council five hundred Arahants.[3] Ananda was to be included in this provided he attained Arahanthood by the time the council convened.[4]

With the Elder Mahakassapa presiding, the five hundred Arahant monks met in council during the rainy season. The first thing Mahakassapa did was to question the foremost expert on the Vinaya of the day, Venerable Upali on particulars of the monastic rule. This monk was well qualified for the task as the Buddha had taught him the whole of the Vinaya himself. The Elder Mahakassapa asked him specifically about the ruling on the first offense parajika, with regard to the subject, the occasion, the individual introduced, the proclamation, the repetition of the proclamation, the offense and the case of non-offense. Upali gave knowledgeable and adequate answers and his remarks met with the unanimous approval of the presiding Sangha. Thus, the Vinaya was formally approved.

The Elder Mahakassapa then turned his attention to Ananda in virtue of his reputable expertise in all matters connected with the Dhamma. Happily, the night before the Council was to meet, Ananda had attained Arahantship and joined the Council.[4][1] The Elder Mahakassapa, therefore, was able to question him at length with complete confidence about the Dhamma with specific reference to the Buddha's sermons. This interrogation on the Dhamma sought to verify the place where all the discourses were first preached and the person to whom they had been addressed.

Ananda aided by his word-perfect memory was able to answer accurately and so the Discourses met with the unanimous approval of the Sangha. The First Council also gave its official seal of approval for the closure of the chapter on the minor and lesser rules, and approval for their observance. It took the monks seven months to recite the whole of the Vinaya and the Dhamma and those monks sufficiently endowed with good memories retained all that had been recited. This historic first council came to be known as the Pancasatika because five hundred fully enlightened Arahants had taken part in it.

  • The Sattapanni Cave in Rajgir, where the First Buddhist Council may have been held.

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RoseFairy

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Posted: 12 September 2013 at 8:12am | IP Logged

Second Buddhist council


Pipal.jpg
Early
Buddhism
Scriptures

Gandhran texts
gamas
Pali Canon

Councils

1st Council
2nd Council
3rd Council
4th Council

Schools

First Sangha
"" Mahsghika
" Ekavyvahrika
" Lokottaravda
" Bahurutya
" Prajaptivda
"" Caitika
"" Sthaviravda
" Mahsaka
" Dharmaguptaka
" Kyapya
" Sarvstivda
"" Vibhajyavda
"" Theravda

The Second Buddhist council took place approximately one hundred years after the Buddha's parinirva. Virtually all scholars agree that the second council was a historical event.[1] Traditions regarding the Second Council are confusing and ambiguous, but it is agreed that the overall result was the first schism in the Sagha, between the Sthaviras and the Mahsghikas, although it is not agreed upon by all what the cause of this split was.[2]


Modern scholarship

Mahdeva legend

According to the Theravadin account, the Second Council occurred in Vail. Its purpose was to adjudicate on ten points which amounted to minor infringements of the Vinaya, such as handling money and eating after midday.[3] The council was convened, and an elder rendered a verdict condemning the ten points, after which the council was closed.[4] According to this account, some 35 years later at Paliputra, there was another meeting over five points held by a figure named Mahdeva.[5] These five points were essentially regarding doctrines of the fallibility and imperfection of arhats, which were opposed by some.[6] In this account, the majority (Mahsagha) sided with Mahdeva, and the minority (Sthaviras) were opposed to it, thus causing a split in the Sagha.[7] However, the Samayabhedoparacanacakra records that Mahdeva was a completely different figure who was the founder of the Caitika sect over 200 years later.[8][9] Some scholars have concluded that an association of "Mahdeva" with the first schism was a later sectarian interpolation.[10] Jan Nattier and Charles Prebish write:[11]

Mahdeva has nothing to do with the primary schism between the Mahsghikas and Sthaviras, emerging in a historical period considerably later than previously supposed, and taking his place in the sectarian movement by instigating an internal schism within the already existing Mahsghika school.

Addition of Vinaya rules

Under the influence of materials from the Theravda school, some modern historians have tended to see the Mahsghikas as a lax, breakaway group. However, the account by the Mahsghika school itself saw the Sthaviras as being the breakaway group which was attempting to modify the original Vinaya.[12] Skilton has suggested that the problems of contradictory accounts are solved by the Mahsghika riputraparipcch, which is the earliest surviving account of the schism.[13] In this account, the council was convened at Paliputra over matters of vinaya, and it is explained that the schism resulted from the majority (Mahsagha) refusing to accept the addition of rules to the Vinaya by the minority (Sthaviras).[14] Regarding this matter, L.S. Cousins writes, "The Mahsghikas were essentially a conservative party resisting a reformist attempt to tighten discipline. The likelihood is that they were initially a larger body, representing the mass of the community, the mahsaga."[15]

The riputraparipcch contains an account in which an old monk rearranges and augments the traditional Vinaya, consequently causing dissention among the monks that required the king's arbitration and eventually precipitating the first schism.[16] As stated in the riputraparipcch:

He copied and rearranged our Vinaya, developing and augmenting what Kyapa had codified and which was called "Vinaya of the Great Assembly" (Mahsghavinaya). [...] The king considered that [the doctrines of the two parties represented] were both the work of the Buddha, and since their preferences were not the same, [the monks of the two camps] should not live together. As those who studied the old Vinaya were in the majority, they were called the Mahsghika; those who studied the new [Vinaya] were in the minority, but they were all Sthaviras; thus they were named Sthavira.

Scholars have generally agreed that the matter of dispute was indeed a matter of vinaya, and have noted that the account of the Mahsghikas is bolstered by the vinaya texts themselves, as vinayas associated with the Sthaviras do contain more rules than those of the Mahsghika Vinaya.[17] For example, the Mahsghika Prtimoka has 67 rules in the aika-dharma section, while the Theravda version has 75 rules.[18]

Vinaya antiquity

Modern scholarship is generally in agreement that the Mahsghika Vinaya is the oldest.[19][20] This agrees well with the views of the Chinese monk Faxian, who travelled to India in order to procure the Mahsghika Vinaya, which was regarded as the original.[21] According to Andrew Skilton, future scholars may determine that a study of the Mahsghika school will contribute to a better understanding of the early Dharma-Vinaya than the Theravda school.[22]

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RoseFairy

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Posted: 12 September 2013 at 8:14am | IP Logged

Third Buddhist council



Pipal.jpg
Early
Buddhism
Scriptures

Gandhran texts
gamas
Pali Canon

Councils

1st Council
2nd Council
3rd Council
4th Council

Schools

First Sangha
"" Mahsghika
" Ekavyvahrika
" Lokottaravda
" Bahurutya
" Prajaptivda
"" Caitika
"" Sthaviravda
" Mahsaka
" Dharmaguptaka
" Kyapya
" Sarvstivda
"" Vibhajyavda
"" Theravda

The Third Buddhist council was convened in about 250 BCE at Asokarama in Pataliputra, supposedly under the patronage of Emperor Asoka, a grave question mark hangs over this though as Asoka never mentioned it in his edicts, which one might have expected if he had called the council.

The traditional reason for convening the Third Buddhist Council is reported to have been to rid the Sangha of corruption and bogus monks who held heretical views. It was presided over by the Elder Moggaliputta Tissa and one thousand monks participated in the Council. The council is recognized and known to both the Theravada and Mahayana schools, though its importance is central only to the Theravada school.[1] Tradition has it that Asoka had won his throne through shedding the blood of all his father's sons except his own brother, Tissa Kumara, who eventually got ordained and achieved Arahantship.

Historical background

The account of the background to the Third Council is as follows: Emperor Asoka was crowned in the two hundred and eighteenth year after the Buddha's Mahaparinibbna. At first he paid only token homage to the Dhamma and the Sangha and also supported members of other religious sects as his father had done before him. However, all this changed when he met the pious novice-monk Nigrodha who preached him the Appamada-vagga. Thereafter he ceased supporting other religious groups and his interest in and devotion to the Dhamma deepened. He used his enormous wealth to build, it is said, eighty-four thousand pagodas and viharas and to lavishly support the bhikkhus with the four requisites. His son Mahinda and his daughter Sanghamitta were ordained and admitted to the Sangha.

Eventually, his generosity was to cause serious problems within the Sangha. In time the order was infiltrated by many unworthy men, holding heretical views and who were attracted to the order because of the Emperor's generous support and costly offerings of food, clothing, shelter and medicine. Large numbers of faithless, greedy men espousing wrong views tried to join the order but were deemed unfit for ordination.

Despite this they seized the chance to exploit the Emperor's generosity for their own ends and donned robes and joined the order without having been ordained properly. Consequently, respect for the Sangha diminished. When this came to light some of the genuine monks refused to hold the prescribed purification or Uposatha ceremony in the company of the corrupt, heretical monks.

When the Emperor heard about this he sought to rectify the situation and dispatched one of his ministers to the monks with the command that they perform the ceremony. However, the Emperor had given the minister no specific orders as to what means were to be used to carry out his command. The monks refused to obey and hold the ceremony in the company of their false and 'thieving' companions (Pali, theyya-sinivsaka).

In desperation the angry minister advanced down the line of seated monks and drawing his sword, beheaded all of them one after the other until he came to the King's brother, Tissa who had been ordained. The horrified minister stopped the slaughter and fled the hall and reported back to the Emperor. Asoka was deeply grieved and upset by what had happened and blamed himself for the killings. He sought Thera Moggaliputta Tissa's counsel. He proposed that the heretical monks be expelled from the order and a third Council be convened immediately.

Council

So it was that in the seventeenth year of the Emperor's reign the Third Council was called. Thera Moggaliputta Tissa headed the proceedings and chose one thousand monks from the sixty thousand participants for the traditional recitation of the Dhamma and the Vinaya, which went on for nine months. The Emperor, himself questioned monks from a number of monasteries about the teachings of the Buddha. Those who held wrong views were exposed and expelled from the Sangha immediately. In this way the Bhikkhu Sangha was purged of heretics and bogus bhikkhus.

According to the Pali and Chinese accounts, the Elder Moggaliputta Tissa, in order to refute a number of heresies and ensure the Dhamma was kept pure, compiled a book during the council called the Kathavatthu. This book consists of twenty-three chapters, and is a collection of discussions on the points of controversy. It gives refutations of the 'heretical' views held by various Buddhist sects on matters philosophical. The Kathavatthu is the fifth of the seven books of the Abhidhamma Pitaka. However, the historicity of this has been questioned, as the account preserved in the San Jian Lu Pi Po Sho (Sudassanavinayavibhasha), although otherwise almost identical, does not mention the Kathavatthu.

Moggaliputtatissa told Ashoka that the doctrine taught by the Buddha was the Vibhajjavada, the Doctrine of Analysis. This term is used in various senses, and it is not clear exactly what it meant in this context. Traditionally, however, the Sri Lankan Theravadins and other mainland schools of Early Buddhism identified themselves as Vibhajjavada.

Emissaries

see also Greco-Buddhist monasticism

Buddhist proselytism at the time of king Ashoka (260-218 BCE).

One of the most significant achievements ascribed by Theravada tradition to this Dhamma assembly and one which was to bear fruit for centuries to come, was the Emperor's sending forth of monks, well versed in the Buddha's Dhamma and Vinaya who could recite all of it by heart, to teach it in nine different countries.

Country name Missionary name
(1) Kasmira-Gandhara Majjhantika/Mahyantika Thera
(2) Mahisamandala (Mysore) Mahadeva Thera
(3) Vanavasi Rakkhita Thera
(4) Aparantaka (Northern Gujarat, Kathiawar, Kachch and Sindh) Yona-Dhammarakkhita Thera
(5) Maharattha (Maharastra) Mahadhammarakkhita Thera
(6) Yona (Greece) Maharakkhita Thera
(7) Himavanta (area in Himalayas) Majjhima Thera
(8) Suvannabhumi (Myanmar / Mon) / Thailand) Sona Thera and Uttara Thera
(9) Lankadipa (Sri Lanka) Mahamahinda Thera

Results of missions

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The Dhamma missions to Sri Lanka and Kashmir and Gandhara were very successful, leading to a long-term presence and dominance of Buddhism in those areas.

It is not clear exactly how influential the interactions to Egypt and Greece may have been, but some authors have commented that some level of syncretism between Hellenist thought and Buddhism may have started in Hellenic lands at that time. They have pointed to the presence of Buddhist communities in the Hellenistic world around that period, in particular in Alexandria (mentioned by Clement of Alexandria), and to the pre-Christian monastic order of the Therapeutae (possibly a deformation of the Pali word "Theravada"), who may have "almost entirely drawn (its) inspiration from the teaching and practices of Buddhist asceticism" (Robert Linssen).

Possibly Buddhist gravestones from the Ptolemaic period have also been found in Alexandria, decorated with what may be depictions of the Dharma wheel (Tarn, "The Greeks in Bactria and India"). Commenting on the presence of Buddhists in Alexandria, some scholars have even pointed out that "It was later in this very place that some of the most active centers of Christianity were established" (Robert Linssen "Zen living").

In the 2nd century CE, the Christian theologian Clement of Alexandria recognized Bactrian Buddhists (Sramanas) and Indian Gymnosophists for their influence on Greek thought:

"Thus philosophy, a thing of the highest utility, flourished in antiquity among the barbarians, shedding its light over the nations. And afterwards it came to Greece. First in its ranks were the prophets of the Egyptians; and the Chaldeans among the Assyrians; and the Druids among the Gauls; and the Sramanas among the Bactrians (" '"); and the philosophers of the Celts; and the Magi of the Persians, who foretold the Saviour's birth, and came into the land of Judaea guided by a star. The Indian gymnosophists are also in the number, and the other barbarian philosophers. And of these there are two classes, some of them called Sramanas (""), and others Brahmins ("'")." Clement of Alexandria "The Stromata, or Miscellanies" Book I, Chapter XV [2]

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Fourth Buddhist council




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Fourth Buddhist Council is the name of two separate Buddhist council meetings. The first one was held in the 1st century BC, in Sri Lanka. In this fourth Buddhist council the Theravadin Pali Canon was for the first time committed to writing, on palm leaves. The second one was held by the Sarvastivada school, in Kashmir around the 1st century AD.


Fourth Buddhist Council in Sri Lanka

The 1st Fourth Buddhist Council (Theravada tradition) was held in response to a year in which the harvests in Sri Lanka were particularly poor, and many monks subsequently died of starvation. Because the Pali Canon was in that time solely remembered by heart, the surviving monks recognized the danger of not writing the teachings of the Tipitaka down, so that even if some of the monks (whose duty it was to study and remember parts of the Tipitaka for later generations) died, the teachings would not be lost. This Fourth Buddhist Council took three years.

The Fourth Buddhist Council was held in Tambapanni (Sri Lanka) under the patronage of King Vattagamani (r. 103-77 BCE). The main reason for its convening was the realization that it was now not possible for the majority of monks to retain the entire Tipitaka in their memories as had been the case formerly for the Venerable Mahinda and those who followed him soon after. Therefore, as the art of writing had, by this time developed substantially it was thought expedient and necessary to have the entire body of the Buddha's teaching written down.

King Vattagamani supported the monk's idea and a council was held specifically to commit the entire Tipitaka to writing, so that the genuine Dhamma might be lastingly preserved. To this purpose, the Venerable Maharakkhita and five hundred monks recited the words of the Buddha and then wrote them down on palm leaves. This remarkable project took place in a cave called, the Aloka lena, situated in the cleft of an ancient landslip near what is now Matale. Thus the aim of the Council was achieved and the preservation in writing of the authentic Dhamma was ensured. In the 18th century, King Vijayarajasiha had images of the Buddha created in this cave.

After the Council, palm leaves books appeared, and were taken to other countries, such as Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and Laos. The Tipitaka and its commentaries were originally brought to Sri Lanka by the missionary monk Mahinda of the Third Buddhist Council.

Fourth Buddhist Council in Kashmir

The 2nd Fourth Buddhist Council (Sarvastivada tradition) is said to have been convened by the Kushan emperor Kanishka (r. 127-151 CE), perhaps in 78 CE at Jalandhar or in Kashmir. The Fourth Council of Kashmir is not recognized as authoritative in Theravada; reports of this council can be found in scriptures which were kept in the Mahayana tradition. The Mahayana tradition based some of its scriptures on (refutations of) the Sarvastivadin Abhidharma texts, which were systematized at this council.[citation needed]

It is said that for the Fourth Council of Kashmir, Kanishka gathered 500 monks headed by Vasumitra, partly, it seems, to compile extensive commentaries on the (Sarvastivadin) Abhidharma, although it is possible that some editorial work was carried out upon the existing canon itself. The main fruit of this Council was the vast commentary known as the Mah-Vibhsh ("Great Exegesis"), an extensive compendium and reference work on a portion of the Sarvstivdin Abhidharma.

Scholars[who?] believe that it was also around this time that a significant change was made in the language of the Sarvstivdin canon, by converting an earlier Prakrit version into Sanskrit. Although this change was probably effected without significant loss of integrity to the canon, this event was of particular significance since Sanskrit was the official holy language of Brahmanism in India, and was also being used by other thinkers (regardless of their specific religious or philosophical allegiance), thus enabling a far wider audience to gain access to Buddhist ideas and practices. For this reason, all major (Sarvastivad and Mahayana) Buddhist scholars in India thereafter wrote their commentaries and treatises in Sanskrit.

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Posted: 12 September 2013 at 8:16am | IP Logged

Fifth Buddhist council


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The Fifth Buddhist council (Burmese: ") took place in Mandalay, Burma (Myanmar) in 1871 AD in the reign of King Mindon. The chief objective of this meeting was to recite all the teachings of the Buddha according to the Theravada Pali Canon and examine them in minute detail to see if any of them had been altered, distorted or dropped. It was presided over by three Elders, the Venerable Mahathera Jagarabhivamsa, the Venerable Narindabhidhaja, and the Venerable Mahathera Sumangalasami in the company of 2,400 monks. Their joint Dhamma recitation lasted five months.

The Fifth Buddhist council was a Burmese affair, and most other Buddhist countries were not involved in it. It is not generally recognized outside Burma.[1] It has been argued that, since the Theravadin multinational Sixth Buddhist council received the name of "Sixth Buddhist council", this involved implicitly recognizing the fifth, even though most other nations were not involved in the fifth council, and the results of the fifth council were limited to the Burmese edition of the Pali Canon only. However, there were a number of other councils held in Ceylon and Thailand between the fourth and sixth, so the total can be made up in other ways.[2]

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