Buddhism: A Short History (Short Religion)
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Macedon, Cyrene and Epirus. These missions have left no trace and they may very well have been ineffective. The rather dim awareness of 47 Buddhism which we find in Greek authors can be accounted for by later contacts which took place in connection with the trade which flourished in Roman times between India and the Mediterranean. It was only in Ceylon that Asoka’s missionary activity bore fruit. Once brought there about 240 BC by Mahinda, Asoka’s son, Buddhism has existed in Ceylon for a
circumstances. Of particular importance for the success of their missionary enterprises was their attitude to the Vinaya 72 rule which forbids monks to practise medicine. The history of Christian missions in recent centuries shows that, violence apart, the medical missionaries effected more conversions than anyone else. The sword was the one method which the Buddhists disdained to use, but the scalpel, the herb and the potion opened to the Maháyánists the houses of the poor and rich alike.
contemplation are recommended to the disciple: 1. To look into the serenity of Mind to which all things return; 2. To realize that the world of particulars exists because of the One Mind; 3. To observe the perfect and mysterious interpenetration of all things; 4. To observe that there is nothing but Suchness; 105 5. To observe that the mirror of Sameness reflects the images of all things, which thereby do not obstruct each other; 6. To observe that, when one particular object is picked up, all
any revival of the religion will depend on the success of their endeavours. In Kashmir, the last centuries of Hindu rule were on the whole years of misrule, and the years between 855 and 1338 represent a period of continuous decline and of political disintegration. Buddhism and Śivaism fused and Buddhists and Śivaites often lived together in the same religious 127 foundations. After 1000, many Kashmiri scholars and craftsmen went to Tibet, Ladakh, Cuge and Spiti, and between 1204–13
Bu-ston’s (1322) “History of Buddhism in India and Tibet” (chos-‘byun) is indeed a masterpiece of its kind, comprehensive and marked by deep philosophical understanding. The first volume gives a survey of the Scriptures; the second deals with the “twelve principal events in the life of the Buddha Śákyamuni”, followed by the “three rehearsals of the doctrine”, and so on up to the “prophecies about the disappearance of the doctrine” in India, and its continuation in Tibet, the third volume gives an