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Do you also read Mahayana Sutras? - Dhamma Wheel

Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Exploring Theravāda's connections to other paths. What can we learn from other traditions, religions and philosophies?

Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Yes, all the time
15
21%
Sometimes, in passing
31
43%
No, I only read the Tipitaka
26
36%
 
Total votes: 72

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mettafuture
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Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:01 pm

:meditate:

meindzai
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby meindzai » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:04 pm

Maybe should have included "used to." :)

-M

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mettafuture
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:21 pm


Sanghamitta
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby Sanghamitta » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:45 pm

No , but I did once read The Lord Of The Rings.
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.

meindzai
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby meindzai » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:46 pm


meindzai
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby meindzai » Mon Jan 25, 2010 6:49 pm


Sanghamitta
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby Sanghamitta » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:02 pm

Naughty.. :smile:
The going for refuge is the door of entrance to the teachings of the Buddha.

Bhikku Bodhi.

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jcsuperstar
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby jcsuperstar » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:07 pm

สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat

Kenshou
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby Kenshou » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:14 pm

Used to. Though there came to a point where I started to understand the divisions between the schools of Buddhism, and then I happened to notice that most of the sutras/suttas that actually made sense to me were all coming out of the Tipitaka. And though it isn't the same as sutras, I still read koans once and awhile. I've still got a fondness for Chan/Zen and like their literature, but in practice I put Theravada at the top.

Some of the Mahayana sutras can be so funny though;

The Best Sutra Ever

And the Buddha spoke to the assembly:
"I am about to speak the greatest Sutra ever."
"This is the best Sutra ever, this Sutra is really great."
"If you study this Sutra diligently 10,000 times, you will be Enlightened in this life."
"If you fail to do so, you will surely spend many kalpas in Hell.
"This marks the end of the Best Sutra Ever.


Okay, great, but where's the content? :thinking: Maybe a Westerner like me just can't interpret the imagery, but I think I'll go read the Pali Canon instead, *cough*...

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bodom
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby bodom » Mon Jan 25, 2010 7:45 pm

I enjoy the Platform Sutra and the Heart Sutra, Red Pines translation's.

:anjali:
To study is to know the texts,
To practice is to know your defilements,
To attain the goal is to know and let go.

- Ajahn Lee Dhammadharo


With mindfulness immersed in the body
well established, restrained
with regard to the six media of contact,
always centered, the monk
can know Unbinding for himself.

- Ud 3.5


https://www.dhammatalks.org/index.html
http://www.ajahnchah.org/

Mawkish1983
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby Mawkish1983 » Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:32 pm

I answered "no", because I don't.

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theravada_guy
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby theravada_guy » Mon Jan 25, 2010 8:47 pm

Greetings all,

I second what mawkish said.
With metta,

Justin

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mettafuture
Posts: 393
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby mettafuture » Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:04 pm

I answered sometimes because I'm very selective about the ones I read. I don't bother with most Mahayana Sutras, especially the ones that claim to be the words of Siddhartha Gautama. Most of those texts, in my opinion, are counterfeit. However, I do believe that there have been other great thinkers since the Buddha, and I always keep an open spot on my bookshelf for their writings.
Last edited by mettafuture on Tue Jan 26, 2010 5:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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retrofuturist
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby retrofuturist » Mon Jan 25, 2010 11:08 pm

"Do not force others, including children, by any means whatsoever, to adopt your views, whether by authority, threat, money, propaganda, or even education." - Ven. Thich Nhat Hanh

"The uprooting of identity is seen by the noble ones as pleasurable; but this contradicts what the whole world sees." (Snp 3.12)

"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead" - Thomas Paine

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Kare
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby Kare » Tue Jan 26, 2010 12:46 pm

I have read lots of Mahayana texts - but found them more and more superfluous and unnecessary. Some, like the Lotus Sutra, are downright disgusting. Still I can enjoy some of the beautiful paradoxes in the Lankavatara Sutra, or the deep and sincere feelings expressed in the Bodhicaryavatara, or the penetrating insights of for instance Vasubandhu in his Madhyantavibhagashastra. There is, however, a cathegory of Mahayana texts that have meant a lot to me, and that is Zen stories. In these stories there often are poignant pointers to reality that are easily recognizable from a Vipassana point of view.
Mettāya,
Kåre

meindzai
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby meindzai » Tue Jan 26, 2010 4:17 pm

Vimilikirti is quite funny, if you are not offended easily.

-M

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mettafuture
Posts: 393
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby mettafuture » Tue Jan 26, 2010 5:29 pm


meindzai
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby meindzai » Tue Jan 26, 2010 6:27 pm


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zavk
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby zavk » Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:13 am

I think the study of suttas is best performed together with the right supporting conditions--i.e. with the guidance of a teacher, with the support of a sangha, as part of a study group, etc. Without these supporting conditions, the understanding of the texts would be limited. All sorts of misunderstanding could easily arise. In my own experience, my understanding of Theravadin Suttas has been greatly influenced by these supporting conditions.

I am not practicing Mahayana so I obviously do not have these kinds of support. For this reason, I have refrained from reading Mahayana Sutras (in their entirety).

I have, however, read quite a few critical studies of Mahayana texts, and through these studies I have been introduced to bits and pieces of various Mahayana Sutras. What little I have read has been useful in terms of my overall understanding of the Dhamma.
With metta,
zavk

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Dan74
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Re: Do you also read Mahayana Sutras?

Postby Dan74 » Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:51 am

I obviously do read Mahayana sutras, being a Mahayana practitioner. Not quite "all the time" but often.

There are different classes of sutras. Those focusing on emptiness (shunyata), the so-called Prajnaparamita Sutras, like the Heart Sutra and the Diamond Sutra (no Spade or Cross Sutras, sorry, these belong to a different category). There are also sutras that have more to do with the Mind-Only school, like Lankavatara, or more with Bodhisattvahood or Non-duality like Vimalakirti Nirdesa.

There are also sutras that focus on meditation like The Complete Enlightenment Sutra and Surangama (which also goes into other matters).

I've read Zen (Chan) material more but it actually makes a lot more sense after some sutric background. For those baffled by Zen, it may be worth keeping in mind that a lot of the material around is very advanced. Whereas letters of Zen masters written to followers of different levels are often much more accessible (like Yuan Wu's and his disciple Ta Hui's letters).

Caveat: I am no scholar and my knowledge is extremely patchy and understanding virtually nil. So beware!

_/|\_
_/|\_


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