Buddhist Monastic Life: According to the Texts of the by Mohan Wijayaratna

By Mohan Wijayaratna

This booklet offers a shiny and exact photograph of the way of life and non secular practices of Buddhist priests and nuns within the vintage interval of Theravada Buddhism. the writer describes the way the Buddha's disciples institutionalized and ritualized his teachings approximately nutrition, costume, cash, chastity, solitude, and discipleship. this practice represents an incredible of non secular existence that has been in India and South Asia for greater than thousand years. The creation by way of Steven Collins describes Theravada Buddhist literature, discusses the difficulty of the ancient reliability of the texts, and gives huge feedback for extra interpreting. The ebook might be of curiosity to students and scholars in Asian experiences, non secular stories, anthropology, and heritage.

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Extra resources for Buddhist Monastic Life: According to the Texts of the Theravada Tradition

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Although the Vinaya does not say so, the circumstances in which Jivaka brought the fabric to the Buddha suggest that there was a link between the Buddha's illness and the new robe. More34 Clothing over, as the number of monks increased, it probably became difficult to find enough rags for everybody. It was right and proper to allow other ways of obtaining material to make robes. It looks as if the Master was only waiting to be asked by devotees to allow monks to wear robes given by lay people. If the Buddha and his disciples had started from the first days to beg for robes made with unused pieces of material, and to accept them, this would undoubtably have hindered their popularity.

But for Buddhist monasticism this aspect of their renunciation was not important. What mattered was the way in which the "renouncer" led the religious life after joining the Community. So as to understand this attitude better, let us turn our attention to some examples of novice members of the Community. When people asked to be admitted to the Community, the Buddha and the monks let them join. But they did not always wait for people who already possessed a good understanding of the religious life and the Teaching to come and ask for ordination or admission.

So not only were the monasteries and furniture considered common property, but also tools and artifacts, and plants growing on the monastery grounds. Monks did not have the right to own them in person, to accept them as their own or to distribute them. No person or group had the authority to change or to debate the absolute character of this rule. In other words, even with the unanimous agreement of the Community, the above-mentioned goods were not to be given away or distributed. These rules give us quite a clear picture of the living conditions of the Buddhist "renouncers," and of their attitude toward material objects, especially their residences.

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