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Ch. 5 Lecture notes (Week 6)

by: Jessica Crump

Ch. 5 Lecture notes (Week 6) REL 101

Marketplace > University of Mississippi > Religion > REL 101 > Ch 5 Lecture notes Week 6
Jessica Crump
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About this Document

These are my lecture notes from week 6 (9/27 and 9/29). They cover the first two parts of the Buddhism chapter.
Intro to Religion
Mary F Thurlkill
Class Notes
Religious Studies
25 ?




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This 7 page Class Notes was uploaded by Jessica Crump on Thursday October 13, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to REL 101 at University of Mississippi taught by Mary F Thurlkill in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 6 views. For similar materials see Intro to Religion in Religion at University of Mississippi.


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Date Created: 10/13/16
9/27/16 Chapter 5: Buddhism Pgs: 143 – 155 Buddhism and Hinduism differences  Nirvana vs. moksha – kind of the same but minor differences  No deities worshipped in Buddhism – some acknowledge the presence of gods but do not envy or worship them (trans-theistic)  No place for pleasure in Buddhism, whereas there is in Hinduism  No caste system in Buddhism  No self that is reincarnated like the Atman in in Hinduism  Buddhism has a starting point, rather than Hinduism’s pretty vague history Siddhartha thutama  6 -5 century BCE, Indian religious reformer  Miraculous birth – his mother had a vison before his birth about an elephant that entered her womb (elephants are strong and prosperous) foreshadowing a special kid who would have a significant life; some say he came out walking and talking; others say he came out with signs on his body called the “32 signs of great man” (webbed fingers or toes, animal characteristics, long eyelashes, long torso like a lion, head protrusion, skin imprints)  Prince – initially lived a lavish, fortunate life. He was sheltered from the outside world  Leaves the palace to find the “Four Sights” o an old man – aging is inevitable o sick man – sickness is a natural part of life o dead man – death is inevitable o a sannyasin – a holy wandering man  Returns to the palace unsatisfied, begins to not enjoy the things he did previously; renounces everything (royalty, family, food, etc.)  tried ascetic path; discovers the Middle Path to reach Nirvana  Middle path is born through his inability to think about anything other than his hunger and weaknesses; finds that one needs to find the balance between indulgence and renunciation  The name Buddha is his name after his enlightenment “Buddha” means enlightened or awakened one  45 years taught Dharama, or teachings, to all castes  5 precepts - no killing, stealing, sexual misconduct, lying, intoxicants 9/27/16  about the age of 80, he has his final release from samsara (pari- nirvana)  Relics (his body/ashes) were put in stupas (monuments), they were put at certain religious sites that people often travel to  Some say his death was due to food poisoning Four Noble Truths (Buddha’s Dharma) 1. Life – “dukkha” = suffereing, unease, dissatisfaction 2. Cause of suffering is desire – if you desire and do not receive, that is how you become dissatisfied or suffer 3. There is a way to end suffering 4. The way to end it is to end desire through non-attachment Noble Eightfold Path = Middle Path – the path to non-attachment 1. Right view 2. Right intentions 3. Right speech 4. Right action 5. Right livelihood 6. Right effort 7. Right understanding 8. Right thought or motives 9. Right mindfulness 10. Right meditation [These are often subcategorized, the colors and numbers correspond to the category] Wisdom – (7) understand the Four Noble Truths; (8) uncover unwholesome habits, eliminate self-centeredness  Figure out which habits are leading to your attachments  Biggest issue is being attached to one’s self Ethical Conduct – (3) no lying, gossiping, speaking harshly, divisive speech; (4) observe 5 precepts; (5) work without violating 5 precepts Concentration – (6) eliminate impurities of mind, cultivate wholesome actions, (9) cultivate awareness in every moment; (10) quiet the mind through mental discipline Buddha didn’t describe unseen reality, life after death, or origins of the universe because they distractions and questions that steer you from the important things in life – they are attachments 9/27/16 Metaphor: man hit with poison arrow  Who shot the arrow? What kind of poison is on it? How long is the arrow?  All distractions to the ultimate answer = pull the arrow out. Dharma – raft to get to farther shore (nirvana); don’t become too attached to the teachings, just use them as a tool to get to your goals 9/29/16 Chapter 5: Buddhism Pgs: 155-170 From Quiz #3: Arhat – enlightened one Lama – Vajrayana Tantras – Vajrayana Pure Land – Mahayana “way of the Elders” – Theravada Last Class Review: Siddhartha Gautama  Four sights: death, sickness, old age, sannyasi  Nirvana – enlightened status o He learns the four noble truths  Life is suffering  Suffering is caused by deire  There is a way out of suffering  The way is the eightfold/middle path Teachings  Marks of Existence o Impermanence – nothing stays the same; everything is constantly changing; everything is in a state of becoming (something else) o Dukkha – suffering; existence is marked by suffering – dissatisfaction, physical discomfort, etc. o Anatman – (opposite of Hinduism) no self, even oneself is impermanent, we change from one moment to the next, so we definitely aren’t the same in another lifetime  Hard to release the attachment to oneself, you are the last thing you have  Karma decides who you are in the next lifetime  Skandas – bundles of characteristics that are ever- changing but may be similar to your past self  The goal is to detach oneself from oneself to achieve enlightenment; ego = attachment  Interdependent origination – everything is interconnected, thus when one thing changes, so does everything else; nothing and no one has individuality 9/29/16 States of Existence  Gods – not ideal; they aren’t suffering so they don’t know that they don’t acknowledge enlightenment; they are distracted  Humans – ideal because you have the mental capacity and the ability to release attachment and achieve enlightenment, and enough suffering to want to achieve enlightenment. One can also become a monk in this existence which is ideal  Animals – don’t have the mental capacity to reach enlightenment  Hungry ghosts – constantly desiring, thus always suffering; a lifetime of torment  Hell beings – different realms of hell Nontheistic/transtheistic – acknowledgement of gods but they are not put to a high status Buddha – a teacher, not a god; follow, and learn from him, but he’s not one to devote your life “Take refuge” in Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha Sangha  Monastic Rules o Simplicity – to their day: studying and mediation; their possessions: robes, bowls for offerings (because they rely on the lay Buddhists for food), and more o Celibacy – sexual desire is suffering; ultimate betrayal of the community  Monks and nuns are not allowed alone in the same room because it may bring about desire o Non-violence – nothing that would harm nature, animals, or humans  Nuns have 8 additional rules – they are subordinate to monks, they have to turn to the monks for advice no matter the experience or knowledge they posses Types of Buddhism 1. Theravada – southeast Asia 2. Mahayana – East Asia 3. Vajrayana (Tantric) – central Asia **she wants us to know these locations** 9/29/16  Theravada Buddhism – “way (doctrine) of the Elders” o Early Buddhist councils o Earlier roots than the other sects o King Asoka – took over a lot of India, converted to Theravada Buddhism and thus many of the people in his kingdom were educated of it and converted  Credited with helping Buddhism survive o Nirvana by one’s own efforts o Arhat - someone who has achieved enlightenment; “a worthy one”  Takes many lifetimes o Tripitaka (Pali Canon) – “Three Baskets”  Three baskets of documents that are important to the religion  Monastic rules  Teachings Theravada Practices  Monastics: meditation and studying o For insight and knowledge  Lay Buddhists: temples, supporting the monastic community, merit- making (by supporting the monks and nuns), shrines o They’re not expecting to achieve enlightenment; they are hoping to get enough good karma or merit to be reborn into a better life i.e. a monk or nun status Mahayana Buddhism  “Great Vehicle” – believed to be the greatest expression of Buddhism  the largest branch of Buddhism  Buddha is not just a man, he’s a manifestation of the ultimate Buddha (the divine reality)  Compassion – core teaching; compassion for other people’s enlightenment; reach enlightenment and then help others reach enlightenment  Bodhisattvas – someone who has achieved enlightenment and helps others to achieve enlightenment; people dedicated to helping others achieve enlightenment o Unlike bodhisattvas, arhats don’t think they can help you reach enlightenment, you’re on your own  Mayhanana Sutras o The lotus sutras 9/29/16 o The perfection of wisdom sutras o The heart sutras  Sutras – Mahayana text Forms of Mahayana  Pure land – devotion to Amitabha (a bodhisattva) o Believe in a heaven-like place called the Pure Land o Amitabha is helping them get to get the pure land to evade corruption so that they can achieve enlightenment  Chan (China) /Zen (Japan) o Believe that enlightenment can be achieved much quicker, by doing certain techniques o Koans – riddles to challenge your mind to get beyond logic to reach another stage of wisdom o Sitting meditation – a specific posture that yields a more effective meditation


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