Get Buddha: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) PDF

By Michael Carrithers

ISBN-10: 0192854534

ISBN-13: 9780192854537

During this priceless advent, Michael Carrithers publications us during the complicated and occasionally conflicting details that Buddhist texts provide us concerning the lifestyles and instructing of the Buddha. He discusses the social and political history of India within the Buddha's time and strains the advance of his suggestion. He additionally assesses the speedy and frequent assimilation of Buddhism and its modern relevance. Well-paced and informative, this advent will enlighten not just those that research Buddhism and comparative faith yet somebody intrigued via the extraordinary philosophy of 1 of the best spiritual thinkers.

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`admirably well-paced and informative.' Galen Strawson, Sunday occasions

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Additional info for Buddha: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)

Sample text

This yogic vision was a powerful and persuasive one, perhaps precisely because it cut through all the diversity and potential confusion of ordinary experience and offered at a stroke a decisively simple view of the ultimate reality. Any one feature of the vision – the experience of deep meditation, the question of what lies beyond the painful world of appearances, or the nature of Selfknowledge – leads inexorably towards each of its other features. It is no wonder that, despite the Buddha’s best efforts, its career continued and expanded in Hindu India.

But there are nevertheless circumstantial accounts of a series of meditative states found in Buddhist texts, states which correspond roughly to those described in some yogic texts; and this Buddhist scheme has the advantage from our point of view of offering relatively unadorned descriptions of attitudes and experiences in meditation, descriptions which could as easily describe meditation in one system as in another. Indeed this Buddhist scheme is so untainted by dogma that it has been adopted by Western psychologists attempting to describe the phenomenon of meditation in general.

The intellectual answer is that one has a self, but no eternal Self. But it is the emotional answer which is important. Since anyone attempting to attain or witness an eternal unchanging Self was, in the Buddha’s view, bound to failure, the doctrine of the Self was an invitation to further suffering: ‘such [a doctrine of the eternal Self] is merely a sensation, a writhing in discomfort, of those venerable ascetics and Brahmans who neither know nor see, and who have fallen victim to desire [for such a Self]’ (D I 40–1).

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Buddha: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Michael Carrithers


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