Auj Rehman, Caden Fernando, Aimon Anwar
Origin of Buddhism
Basic Religous Beliefs
One fundamental belief of Buddhism is often referred to as reincarnation -- the concept that people are reborn after dying. In fact, most individuals go through many cycles of birth, living, death and rebirth. A practicing Buddhist differentiates between the concepts of rebirth and reincarnation. In reincarnation, the individual may recur repeatedly. In rebirth, a person does not necessarily return to Earth as the same entity ever again. He compares it to a leaf growing on a tree. When the withering leaf falls off, a new leaf will eventually replace it. It is similar to the old leaf, but it is not identical to the original leaf.
Sila- their golden rule, everyone is equal.
Samadhia is a form of meditation which they believe that pures their souls.
Classification of Religion
Branches or divisions of the religion:
Theravada is believed to be the oldest form of Buddhism. The term itself comes into use later, but the Theravada tradition upholds the monastic path and adheres to the oldest surviving recorded sayings of the Buddha, collectively called the Pali canon. These original texts were set down in the Pali language by monks in Sri Lanka in the first century CE. Prior to this codification, teachings had been transmitted orally, and concern arose that original texts must be preserved in light of the growing heterodoxy that was developing in India. Mahayana is a philosophical movement that proclaimed the possibility of universal salvation, offering assistance to practitioners in the form of compassionate beings called bodhisattvas. The goal was to open up the possibility of buddhahood (becoming a Buddha) to all sentient beings. The Buddha ceased to be simply a historical figure, but rather was interpreted as a transcendent figure who all could aspire to become.
Key Figures and Important People
Summary: The Dalai Lama is the reincarnation of Buddha and he is the ultimate teacher within the Buddhist way of life. He is mainly there to guide the people to the ultimate goal known as Nirvana.
Summary: There are three main scriptures within Buddhism; the Tripitaka, Sutras, and Tibetan Book of the Dead.
Summary: In modern times, the Eight Auspicious Symbols are the most important.
Buddhism place of worship
Summary: Buddhists will meditate in Wats (generally only in Cambodia, Thailand), Viiharas, home, or at alternative houses of meditation.
Impact of Buddhism on social and family structures
Summary: The lessons of Buddha are intertwined in everyday life of social interactions and families as well.
Impact of Buddhism on cultural beliefs and expectations
Summary: Everyone is expected to understand the way of life and follow it if they wish, especially the Four Noble Truths.
How is the Buddhism diffused?
Buddhism did not proliferate from its hearth, Northeast India. But when Emperor Asoka became ruler of the Magadhan empire things started to change. Asoka sent missionaries, who are people who transmit a religion through relocation diffusion, and incorporated Buddhism in everyday actives and socials principles.
Buddhism diffused to China by missionaries. The ruler of China allowed the citizens to learn the new religion and adopt it if they wish. Soon Buddhist text was converted into chinese writing and Buddhism became a Chinese Religion.
With relocation diffusion and contagious diffusion Buddhism expanded onward to Korea and Japan.
In the process it did something quite unique. Buddhism lost its original hearth, which was India. In India Buddhism is no longer dominant, Hinduism is. However in Sri Lanka Buddhism still thrives, and is the longest place where Buddhism is practiced.
Where is Buddhism practiced today?
Today Buddhism is concentrated mostly in Eastern Asian. Countries like Japan, Korea, China, and Sri Lanka have the most Buddhist in the world.
How many people follow Buddhism?
It is hard to calculate the exact number of people that practice Buddhism because many people have mixed faith, meaning that they practice more than one religion, or combine two religions, for example Shinto-Buddhist, Tribal- Buddhist, Christian- Buddhist, etc. It is estimated that there is about 360 million Buddhist followers.
The four most important are:
1. Lumbini (located in southern Nepal) is the place where Buddha was born.
2. Badh Gaya (located in southeast of Lumbini) this is where Buddha reached perfect enlightenment. The Bo tree where Buddha sat on , and any Bo tree is considered holy.
3. Deer Park in Sarnath is where Buddha preached his first sermon.
4. Kusinagara is where Buddha died at age 80.
Other lesser important places:
5. Sravasti is where Buddha performed multiple images of himself. Sravasti became an active center for Buddhist and an important monastery was made there.
6. Sankasya is where Buddha preached to his mother in heaven and returned back to Earth.
7. Rajagriha is where Buddha tamed a wild elephant.
8. Vaishali is where Buddha declared his death.