Three turnings of the wheel of Dharma, or just one ??

General forum on Mahayana.

Three turnings of the wheel of Dharma, or just one ??

Postby Aemilius » Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:48 am

What do you say to arguments like " Scholars say that the Mahayana scriptures appeared, or were composed, about 400 years later than the Agamas and Nikayas" ??
On what grounds can you consider the Three Turnings to be authentic or inauthentic teaching??
When we know that Dharma existed as an oral tradition for hundreds of years( including the Agama/Nikaya traditions), why do we then accept the so called "dates of the mahayana sutras" without blinking????

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Turnings_of_the_Wheel_of_Dharma

very kindly
Aemilius
svaha
User avatar
Aemilius
 
Posts: 1491
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:44 am

Re: Three turnings of the wheel of Dharma, or just one ??

Postby Sönam » Thu Apr 01, 2010 7:40 pm

To understand the Third turning of the Dharma wheel, we have to understand what are the three bodies (Trikaya) of a Buddha ... that is why sravakas do not accept that third turn.

Sönam
By understanding everything you perceive from the perspective of the view, you are freed from the constraints of philosophical beliefs.
By understanding that any and all mental activity is meditation, you are freed from arbitrary divisions between formal sessions and postmeditation activity.
- Longchen Rabjam -
User avatar
Sönam
 
Posts: 1958
Joined: Wed Mar 24, 2010 2:11 pm
Location: France

Re: Three turnings of the wheel of Dharma, or just one ??

Postby Huifeng » Fri Apr 02, 2010 7:07 am

Aemilius wrote:What do you say to arguments like " Scholars say that the Mahayana scriptures appeared, or were composed, about 400 years later than the Agamas and Nikayas" ??
On what grounds can you consider the Three Turnings to be authentic or inauthentic teaching??
When we know that Dharma existed as an oral tradition for hundreds of years( including the Agama/Nikaya traditions), why do we then accept the so called "dates of the mahayana sutras" without blinking????

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Turnings_of_the_Wheel_of_Dharma

very kindly
Aemilius


First, I'd suggest going and looking at the very idea of "three turnings".
The formula given in the Samdhinirmocana sutra is not the only one.
Why are there two, at least? What purpose would it serve to have two totally different notions of "three turnings"?

Second, I'd suggest doing some serious study of Buddhist history.
Really serious study. Not just enough to know that such-and-such tradition was oral for some time, but get into the real nitty gritty details of all this.

Third, as for "why do we then accept..." - who is this "we" to which you refer?
User avatar
Huifeng
 
Posts: 1469
Joined: Tue Nov 17, 2009 4:51 am

Re: Three turnings of the wheel of Dharma, or just one ??

Postby Aemilius » Tue Apr 06, 2010 3:13 pm

Huifeng wrote:
Aemilius wrote:What do you say to arguments like " Scholars say that the Mahayana scriptures appeared, or were composed, about 400 years later than the Agamas and Nikayas" ??
On what grounds can you consider the Three Turnings to be authentic or inauthentic teaching??
When we know that Dharma existed as an oral tradition for hundreds of years( including the Agama/Nikaya traditions), why do we then accept the so called "dates of the mahayana sutras" without blinking????

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Turnings_of_the_Wheel_of_Dharma

very kindly
Aemilius


First, I'd suggest going and looking at the very idea of "three turnings".
The formula given in the Samdhinirmocana sutra is not the only one.
Why are there two, at least? What purpose would it serve to have two totally different notions of "three turnings"?

Second, I'd suggest doing some serious study of Buddhist history.
Really serious study. Not just enough to know that such-and-such tradition was oral for some time, but get into the real nitty gritty details of all this.

Third, as for "why do we then accept..." - who is this "we" to which you refer?


I have done very little research in buddhist history, recently I read Hirakawa Akira's book History of Indian Buddhism. On this basis I think that the the buddhist history is told in a wrong way usually. There were many different schools, they were all ORAL TRADITION for 300 years.... up to 1000 years. It is difficult to understand this, it should be explained what an oral tradition is! There still are oral traditions on planet earth, in Africa, Australia, Polynesia etc... This aspect of buddhist history should be explained in detail, it should be emphasized.
The first sutras to be written down were probably Mahayana, atleast they were Mahasanghika sutras. Theravada sutras were begun to be written down in Abhayagiri monastery in SriLanka, quite late, I think. Then after some hundreds of years the Abhayagiri monastery lost in a power struggle and it was wiped out of existence. ( All this is told by Hirakawa Akira in his excellent book)
The sutras of the Mahasanghika, Mahayana and other schools appeared based on the existing stream of oral traditions.
svaha
User avatar
Aemilius
 
Posts: 1491
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:44 am

Re: Three turnings of the wheel of Dharma, or just one ??

Postby Aemilius » Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:25 pm

Huifeng wrote:
Aemilius wrote:What do you say to arguments like " Scholars say that the Mahayana scriptures appeared, or were composed, about 400 years later than the Agamas and Nikayas" ??
On what grounds can you consider the Three Turnings to be authentic or inauthentic teaching??
When we know that Dharma existed as an oral tradition for hundreds of years( including the Agama/Nikaya traditions), why do we then accept the so called "dates of the mahayana sutras" without blinking????

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Turnings_of_the_Wheel_of_Dharma

very kindly
Aemilius


First, I'd suggest going and looking at the very idea of "three turnings".
The formula given in the Samdhinirmocana sutra is not the only one.
Why are there two, at least? What purpose would it serve to have two totally different notions of "three turnings"?

Second, I'd suggest doing some serious study of Buddhist history.
Really serious study. Not just enough to know that such-and-such tradition was oral for some time, but get into the real nitty gritty details of all this.

Third, as for "why do we then accept..." - who is this "we" to which you refer?


"We" is used like a passive tense, or a substitute for a passive tense, hence it does not refer to any particular group of persons.

"Study" must also include one's own practice (of three trainings etc...). There is something called Intuition in european world view, there are the Five Eyes and Six Abhijna of buddhism. They are a valid source of knowledge when considering the origin of the Three Dharmachakras. This is more in line with what Sönam is saying. There is no independent material world outside of one's consciousness, neither is there a history of buddhism independent of the perceiver.
svaha
User avatar
Aemilius
 
Posts: 1491
Joined: Sat Mar 27, 2010 11:44 am

Re: Three turnings of the wheel of Dharma, or just one ??

Postby Huifeng » Wed Apr 07, 2010 1:58 pm

Aemilius wrote:I have done very little research in buddhist history, ...


Okay. Hirakawa is one place to start. If you can get your hands on the various histories by Lamotte, Conze, Warder, Nakamura and others, that'll fill out some gaps, too.

All the best!
User avatar
Huifeng
 
Posts: 1469
Joined: Tue Nov 17, 2009 4:51 am


Return to Mahāyāna Buddhism

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 12 guests

>