Buddhism: A Concise Introduction by Huston Smith, Philip Novak

By Huston Smith, Philip Novak

Going way past the masterful presentationof Buddhism within the bestselling The World's Religions, Huston Smith and his best pupil Philip Novak provide a professional, modern, but hugely readable and incisive consultant to the guts of this vibrantly assorted and quickly growing to be culture, one who has an expanding presence and significance at the American scene. Smith is universally considered as the best authority at the world's spiritual traditions, and Novak is an award-winning professor of worldwide religions and a Buddhist practitioner immersed within the modern worlds of yankee and Asian Buddhism.

Smith and Novak respectfully hide the basic teachings, practices, and historic improvement of Buddhism in all its wealthy kind. starting with the existence and legend of the Buddha, Buddhism explores middle Buddhist doctrines equivalent to the 4 Noble Truths, the Eightfold direction, nirvana, and vacancy. The authors cross directly to speak about the break up among Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism, the ongoing divisions of Mahayana into natural Land, Zen, and Tibetan Buddhism, and the confluence of Hinduism and Buddhism in India. the second one 1/2 the booklet follows the worldwide migration of Buddhism and its carrying on with diversification and improvement within the West, particularly in the USA. This compelling paintings by way of nice students -- a mythical instructor and his long-time pupil and colleague -- is the main insightful, up to date, and available creation to this nice and immensely attractive non secular culture on hand today.

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4. The phobia of death. On the basis of years of clinical practice, Carl Jung reported that he found death to be the The Four Noble Truths 35 deepest terror in every patient he had analyzed who had passed the age of forty. Existentialists join him in calling attention to the extent to which the fear of death mars healthy living. 5. To be tied to what one dislikes. Sometimes it is possible to break away, but not always. An incurable disease, a stubborn character defect—for better or for worse, there are martyrdoms to which people are chained for life.

Her insane grief now replaced by gratitude for the Buddha’s compassionate wisdom, she took her son to the cremation grounds. In social encounters, the Buddha’s royal upbringing stood him in good stead. “Fine in presence,” he moved among kings and potentates with ease, for he had been one of them. Yet his poise and sophistication seem not to have distanced him from simple villagers. Surface distinctions of class and caste meant so little to him that he often appears not to have even noticed them.

A second problem arises from the wealth of material in the texts themselves. Buddha taught for forty-five years, and a staggering corpus has come down to us in one form or another. Although the net result is doubtless a blessing, the sheer quantity of materials is bewildering. His teachings remained remarkably consistent over the years, but it was impossible to say things for many minds and in many ways without creating problems of interpretation. These interpretations constitute the third barrier.

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