Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

A forum for those wishing to discuss Buddhist history and teachings in the Western academic manner, referencing appropriate sources.
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Indrajala
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Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Indrajala » Wed Oct 10, 2012 11:33 am

tad etat sarvajñānaṃ karuṇāmūlaṃ bodhicittahetukam upāyaparyavasānam iti |

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mindyourmind
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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby mindyourmind » Wed Oct 10, 2012 12:04 pm

Fascinating stuff, thanks.
Dualism is the real root of our suffering and all of our conflicts.

Namkhai Norbu

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Namgyal » Wed Oct 10, 2012 12:08 pm

Bearded, dreadlocked druids sitting in forest groves discussing metaphysics...sound familiar? Writing about the Ancient Celts Julius Caesar noted, 'Their doctrine is that the soul does not die and that after death it passes from one body into another.' All Northern Europeans had similar beliefs, and as for the South...in the words of Socrates, 'I am confident that there truly is such a thing as living again, and that the living spring from the dead.' So Europeans seeking the forgotten wisdom of their ancestors have only one place to look; Mother India.
:namaste: R.

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Indrajala
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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Indrajala » Wed Oct 10, 2012 12:35 pm

tad etat sarvajñānaṃ karuṇāmūlaṃ bodhicittahetukam upāyaparyavasānam iti |

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Michael_Dorfman » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:00 pm


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Indrajala
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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Indrajala » Wed Oct 10, 2012 1:10 pm

tad etat sarvajñānaṃ karuṇāmūlaṃ bodhicittahetukam upāyaparyavasānam iti |

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Namgyal » Wed Oct 10, 2012 8:18 pm

The Central Asian city states of the Silk Road were mostly Persian in culture, but they were definitely Buddhist in religion, so the direct influence of Zoroastrianism on Buddhism was negligable. Apparently the cult of Amitabha may have copied its devotional aspect from Zoroastrianism worship of Ahura Mazda, but that's all. The situation in respect of Bon and Dzogchen is more complicated. Zhang-Zhung was a kingdom in Western Tibet which had many connections with Ancient Persia. However the biggest influence on Bon in Zhang-Zhung came from Kashmir. This is apparently why Guru Rinpoche spared one of the Bonpo factions, because it was actually descended from an Indian yogic tradition. The root of the misunderstanding is Shangri-la, a.k.a. Shambhala, a.k.a. Olmolungring, which was said to be in Tagzig (Persia). This is said to be the source of Bon Dzogchen. In fact it was an extension of Buddhism into Zoroastrian Iran, rather than the other way round. Understandably, only the faintest traces of this have survived in Iranian folklore. (Just as few people realise that Bagram Airbase in present day Afghanistan, is Bagaram-Viharam-Vihara. It was once the site of a very famous Buddhist temple.) So Shambhala was most likely a Vajrayana cult centre in a remote mountainous region inside Persian territory. It is extremely unlikely to have survived in secret up to the present day, but not impossible.
:namaste: R.

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby viniketa » Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:05 am

. ~

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby purple rose » Thu Oct 11, 2012 10:51 am


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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby deepbluehum » Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:40 pm


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Rakshasa
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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Rakshasa » Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:59 pm

1. It is actually wrong to conclude that India is mostly Aryan, because majority of Indian cultural origins were still pre-Aryan Dravidian and Austro-Asiatic. However, since Indo-Aryan religion (Brahmanism) triumphed over Buddhism and other Shramanic religions after Shankara's revival, most of the surface embellishments to overall Indian religious views appear to be Aryan.

2. India had two Caucasian races - Indo-Aryan and Indo-Scythic, In fact, my opinion, in terms of population, the Indo-Scythians contributed more to the current Indian gene pool compared to even the Indo-Aryans. The whole of North-Western India (Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan etc) which contributes significantly to overall population of India is comprised of castes like Jat/Jatts, Gujjars, Rajputs etc who are confirmed as descendants of Indo-Scythic migrants to India. In fact, their migration could be one of the reasons why the Indo-Aryan Brahmins shifted to South and East and made South India as the center of orthodox Brahmanism after the Gupta age.

3. Many of the Indian native people were strictly matriarchial and had considerable difference in culture with the Indo-Aryans. For example, the early Indo-Aryans worshiped Indra, Agni, Vishnu etc, but today it is fairly common to see worship of various deities, including famous Goddesses like Kali, Durga, Vaishno Devi etc and other deities like Ayyappa, Tirupathi etc who have absolutely no mention in Vedas, Upanishads and early Indo-Aryan literature. Which means that Indo-Aryans took over the religion and its ideas of the natives, as Brahmins, and colored them with Brahmanical ritualism to produce hybrid religious traditions.

4. The even older civilization of Indus Valley was not Indo-Aryan and I am pretty sure that some ideas from this civilization also got carried over to the subsequent civilizations in India. There is a famous seal of a Yogin found from Harappa site.

Also, Buddhism and Shramanism in general is not necessarily an outcome of Aryan civilization because the Vedas and Early Upanishads do not mention the concepts of Karma and rebirth which were central to religions like Jainism and Buddhism. Later these concepts are given some mention in the later Upanishads but it is mentioned just as one of the ideas (among others which the Indo-Aryans encountered during their migrations), and not a central concept of Brahmanism. Hinduism borrows much from Indo-European religion (Vedas) and Buddhism, than Buddhism borrows from Indo-European religion (which is more or less limited to the language).



Just my 2 cents.

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby deepbluehum » Thu Oct 11, 2012 7:53 pm


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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby viniketa » Thu Oct 11, 2012 8:31 pm

. ~

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Indrajala » Fri Oct 12, 2012 1:19 am

tad etat sarvajñānaṃ karuṇāmūlaṃ bodhicittahetukam upāyaparyavasānam iti |

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Rakshasa
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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Rakshasa » Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:42 am

Viniketa,

I am from India and know it for a fact that majority of the people from North Western States like Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan (and even a considerable part of Pakistan) are Jats, Gujjars and Rajputs who are distinctive in their culture, physique from Indians, say, in the South. For one, they are tall, lighter in complexion compared to others, and they are also heavily casteist and have feudal communities which still practice racism against the "Low caste".

Here is the link for your Academic interests:
http://www.jatland.com/home/Indo-Scythian

Also, they are usually simple agricultural communities and dont have cultural diversity and complexity as in the South, central or other parts of India.

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Rakshasa » Fri Oct 12, 2012 7:51 am


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Indrajala
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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Indrajala » Fri Oct 12, 2012 8:12 am

tad etat sarvajñānaṃ karuṇāmūlaṃ bodhicittahetukam upāyaparyavasānam iti |

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Namgyal » Fri Oct 12, 2012 11:33 am

The Atlantic seaboard of Europe, in particular Britain, has about 80% Neolithic DNA, so the invading Indo-Europeans simply took over the top jobs, just as they did in India. The pre-Indo-European aboriginal peoples, which many believe are the ancestors of the Basques, would have carried on much as before. So there is no question that the result is a synthesis of cultures; the foreign rulers decided on the basic framework which was then filled with the deities and practices of the numerically superior natives. Likewise, no one denies that much of Buddhism is derived from Indian aboriginal peoples, however the framework is unquestionably Indo-European.
Huseng wrote-The Indo-European language family extends from Ireland to Nepal.
If I remember correctly both Eire and Iran are from the same root as Arya (noble).
:namaste: R.

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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Illuminaughty » Wed Nov 14, 2012 2:20 am


Slag310
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Re: Indo-European Religions and Buddhism

Postby Slag310 » Sat Feb 02, 2013 3:39 am

A comment about the Indo-European religion(s): I have a website at http://piereligion.org/pierintro.html which gives a few ideas of what can be stated broadly about the Indo-European religions. I have had to study quite a bit about Buddhism in order to separate the threads, you might say. I have found your discussion here very informative.

Slag310


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