The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

No holds barred discussion on the Buddhadharma. Argue about rebirth, karma, commentarial interpretations etc. Be nice to each other.

Re: The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Sun Oct 10, 2010 12:10 pm

Luke wrote:
TMingyur wrote:I am assuming that actually you do not mean "Theravada" but that you mean "the suttas of the pali canon" which is something different due to the Abidhamma (of which there is a specific one for nearly each tradition).

Pema Rigdzin wrote:Well, you have to consider that the Theravadin school is not THE Shravakayana school. The Buddha's original sangha gradually split off into 18 Shravakayana traditions in India, and the Theravada is just one of those. It just so happens that the Shravakayana teachings introduced to Tibet were from the Vaibhashika and Sautrantika schools, not the Theravada.


Okay, so the Tibetans study the Abdharma texts of other Shravakayana schools, but do collections of these schools suttas (their versions of the Pali Canon) still exist?


I'm not sure how much of their pitakas is still extant outside Abidharma and Vinaya, honestly. But like I said above, one's not going to find anything fundamental in the way of guidance in developing virtue, samadhi, or wisdom in Shravakayana sutras that will not be taught by the Buddha in his Mahayana sutras. So studying the Pali or other Shravakayana sutras is not essential but rather more of the same wonderful Dharma.
Pema Rigdzin
 
Posts: 1030
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2009 3:19 am
Location: Southern Oregon

Re: The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

Postby mudra » Mon Oct 11, 2010 6:01 am

Pema Rigdzin wrote:Well, you have to consider that the Theravadin school is not THE Shravakayana school. The Buddha's original sangha gradually split off into 18 Shravakayana traditions in India, and the Theravada is just one of those. It just so happens that the Shravakayana teachings introduced to Tibet were from the Vaibhashika and Sautrantika schools, not the Theravada.


I think you mean the Mulasarvastivadin, who some claim is a subschool of Sarvastivada, was introduced into Tibet. The important thing to note in this context is that Sarvastivadin and Mulasarvastivadin were Sanskrit traditions, and the Theravada was always a Pali tradition.

(The system of classification of tenets [vaibhashika, sautantrika, chitamatra, madhyamaka] was not really something denoting schools of vinaya but more a way of explaining ever more subtle tenets of view. This is really something of an offshoot of Nagarjuna's explanation of views, and of those who followed him.)
User avatar
mudra
 
Posts: 453
Joined: Sat Apr 03, 2010 3:55 am

Re: The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

Postby Pema Rigdzin » Mon Oct 11, 2010 8:16 am

mudra wrote:
Pema Rigdzin wrote:Well, you have to consider that the Theravadin school is not THE Shravakayana school. The Buddha's original sangha gradually split off into 18 Shravakayana traditions in India, and the Theravada is just one of those. It just so happens that the Shravakayana teachings introduced to Tibet were from the Vaibhashika and Sautrantika schools, not the Theravada.


I think you mean the Mulasarvastivadin, who some claim is a subschool of Sarvastivada, was introduced into Tibet. The important thing to note in this context is that Sarvastivadin and Mulasarvastivadin were Sanskrit traditions, and the Theravada was always a Pali tradition.

(The system of classification of tenets [vaibhashika, sautantrika, chitamatra, madhyamaka] was not really something denoting schools of vinaya but more a way of explaining ever more subtle tenets of view. This is really something of an offshoot of Nagarjuna's explanation of views, and of those who followed him.)


No, what I meant was this: the Theravada was only one of many Shravakayana schools and it so happened that it was not its Abidharma that was transmitted to Tibet but instead the Abidharma texts of the Vaibhashikas and Sautrantikas (two sub-sets of the Sarvastivada school). Then I said that shedras typically begin with those teachings first, then go on to Chittmatra, and then to Madhyamaka. Then as a further mention of Shravakayana teachings upheld in Tibet that are equivalent to the Theravada, it is the Sarvastivadin vinaya that Tibetan monks and nuns observe.
Pema Rigdzin
 
Posts: 1030
Joined: Tue Dec 15, 2009 3:19 am
Location: Southern Oregon

Re: The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

Postby mudra » Tue Oct 12, 2010 12:05 pm

Hi Pema Rigdzin,

Agreed that the Pali Abhidharma associated with Theravada didn't make it to Tibet.
I trawled through Alex Berzin's site and found this:

Within the eighteen Hinayana schools, the Vaibhashika and Sautrantika belong to Sarvastivada (thams-cad yod-par smra-ba), a Sanskrit tradition, different from the Pali Theravada tradition (gnas-brtan smra-ba). The Tibetan lineage of monastic vows comes from another of its sub-schools, Mulasarvastivada (gzhi thams-cad yod-par smra-ba).


So Alex Berzin seems to be one who thinks that mulasarvastivada is a sub-school of sarvastivada, I'll bow to that. (my knowledge compared to Alex's is like an anthill compared to a mountain!).

Also let's not forget great big parts of the Abhidharma tradition brought into the Tibetan system are Chittamatrin (think Arya Asangha, who looms large in Gelug teachings at least).
User avatar
mudra
 
Posts: 453
Joined: Sat Apr 03, 2010 3:55 am

Re: The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

Postby Nirveda » Mon Dec 13, 2010 4:55 am

I don't identify with any one tradition, but I am most familiar with the Pali suttas. However, I am equally interested in Tibetan and Zen. Each gives it's own unique angle on the Dharma and set of methods, and I find that they all complement each other. For example, my main meditation practices are Vipassana and Metta, but I've started meditating on emptiness and found it greatly enhanced my practice. (I've found Andy Karr's book Contemplating Reality to be extremely helpful, and I recommend it highly.)
Nirveda
 
Posts: 31
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2010 4:46 pm

Re: The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

Postby muni » Mon Dec 13, 2010 11:42 am

http://www.onebodhitree.org/?q=content/ ... vada-texts


no focus on language-culture. (grasping)
muni
 
Posts: 2734
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 6:59 am

Re: The benefits of studying Theravada for Mahayana?

Postby muni » Mon Dec 13, 2010 1:56 pm

Pema Rigdzin:
" So studying the Pali or other Shravakayana sutras is not essential but rather more of the same wonderful Dharma".

Core teaching included. :anjali:
muni
 
Posts: 2734
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2009 6:59 am

Previous

Return to Open Dharma

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], Huifeng, namoh, saltspring, smcj, supermaxv and 10 guests

>