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Buddhism: one teacher, many traditions

Buddhism: one teacher, many traditions
HH Dalai Lama XIV
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225 x 150
Buddhism is practiced by hundreds of millions of people worldwide, from Tibetan caves to Tokyo temples to redwood retreats. All these traditions trace their beginnings to the teachings of one man in India 2,500 years ago. These teachings spread worldwide in all directions and into numerous languages, making Buddhism one of the today's most influential religions.

In Buddhism, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and American Buddhist nun Thubten Chodron map out the convergence and divergence of the two major Buddhist movements—the Sanskrit traditions of Tibet and East Asia and the Pāli traditions of Sri Lanka and Southeast Asia.

The authors consider Buddhism's core practices and tenets, such as the four noble truths, the practice of meditation, the cultivation of love, and the meaning of nirvāṇa, and how the traditions sometimes agree and sometimes differ in their interpretations. The authors' respectful approach illuminates the many ways that all forms of Buddhism, amid their rich diversity, share a common heritage and common goals.

"This book will reward those who study it carefully with a deep and wide understanding of the way these traditions have mapped their respective visions of the path to enlightenment."
—Bhikkhu Bodhi, translator of In the Buddha's Words

"I highly recommend this volume for everyone seeking a more global understanding of the many traditions of Buddhism, all inspired by the one Teacher, Buddha Shakyamuni."
—B. Alan Wallace, author of The Attention Revolution

"His Holiness and Thubten Chodron, with exception care and attention, have created a book that is at once compelling and wise."
—Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of Full Catastrophe Living

"The spirit of respect and harmony expressed in this excellent book is inspiring.
"—Sharon Salzberg, author of Real Happiness

"A precious gift to all who love the Dharma."
—Tulku Thondup, coauthor of Boundless Healing

"Providing us an opportunity for deep contemplation, Buddhism opens us to the wholeness envisioned by the Buddha for all."
—Larry Rosenberg, author of Breath by Breath

—Eastern Horizon

"An excellent primer on the essentials of Buddhism."
—Spirituality & Practice
Foreword by Bhante Gunaratana
Prologue by His Holiness the Dalai Lama
Preface by Venerable Thubten Chodron

1. Origin and Spread of the Buddha’s Doctrine
The Buddha’s Life
Buddhist Canons and the Spread of the Dharma
Pāli Tradition
Buddhism in China
Buddhism in Tibet
Our Commonalities and Diversity

2. Refuge in the Three Jewels
Existence of the Three Jewels
The Tathāgata’s Qualities
Three Jewels: Pāli Tradition
Three Jewels: Sanskrit Tradition
Buddha’s Awakening, Parinirvāṇa, and Omniscience
Taking Refuge and Maintaining Proper Refuge

3. Sixteen Attributes of the Four Truths
Sanskrit Tradition
Pāli Tradition

4. The Higher Training in Ethical Conduct
The Importance of Ethical Conduct
Prātimokṣa Ethical Restraints
Why Celibacy?
The Vinaya Schools
The Value of the Monastic Community
Fulfilling the Purpose of Monastic Life
Monastics, Priests, and Lay Teachers
Tibetan Monastics and Monastic Institutions
Challenges for Western Monastics
Full Ordination for Women
Advice for Monastics
The Joy of Monastic Discipline
Bodhisattva and Tantric Ethical Restraints

5. The Higher Training in Concentration
The Importance of Concentration
Realms of Existence and Spheres of Consciousness
Pāli Tradition
Five Hindrances and Five Absorption Factors
Four Jhānas
Four Immaterial Absorptions
Eight Meditative Liberations
Sanskrit Tradition
Meditation Position and Meditation Objects
Five Faults and Eight Antidotes
Nine Stages of Sustained Attention
Serenity and Further Meditative Absorptions
Chinese Buddhism

6. The Higher Training in Wisdom: Thirty-Seven Aids to Awakening
Four Establishments of Mindfulness
Mindfulness of the Body
Mindfulness of Feelings
Mindfulness of the Mind
Mindfulness of Phenomena
Four Establishments of Mindfulness for Bodhisattvas
Four Supreme Strivings
Four Bases of Supernormal Power
Five Faculties and Five Powers
Seven Awakening Factors
The Noble Eightfold Path
Conventional and Ultimate Natures of the Thirty-Seven Aids

7. Selflessness and Emptiness
Pāli Tradition: The Self and the Aggregates
Madhyamaka: The Object of Negation
Seven-Point Refutation
Six Elements Are Not the Self
Refutation of Four Extremes of Arising
Selfless and Deceptive
What Carries the Karma?

8. Dependent Arising
Twelve Links of Dependent Arising
Flow of the Links
Who Circles in Saṃsāra?
Benefits of Meditating on the Twelve Links of Dependent Arising
Sanskrit Tradition: Levels of Dependence
Causal Dependence
Mutual Dependence
Mere Dependent Designation
Emptiness and Dependent Arising Are Compatible
Pāli Tradition: Terms, Concepts, and Conventions

9. Uniting Serenity and Insight
Pāli Tradition
Sanskrit Tradition
Chinese Buddhism

10. Progressing on the Path
Pāli Tradition: Purification and Knowledge
Sanskrit Tradition: Five Paths and Ten Bodhisattva Grounds
Differences among the Three Vehicles
Sanskrit Tradition: Nirvāṇa
Pāli Tradition: Nibbāna

11. The Four Immeasurables
Pāli Tradition
Four Immeasurables and Insight
Near and Far Enemies
Sanskrit Tradition

12. Bodhicitta
Tibetan Buddhism
Sevenfold Cause-and-Effect Instruction
Equalizing and Exchanging Self and Others
Self-Interest, Self-Confidence, Self-Centered Attitude, and Self-Grasping Ignorance
Integrating the View with Bodhicitta
Chinese Buddhism
Four Great Vows
Aspiring and Engaging Bodhicitta
Pāli Tradition: Bodhicitta and Bodhisattas

13. Bodhisattva Training in the Perfections
Sanskrit Tradition
Pāli Tradition: Ten Pāramīs
Perfection of Generosity
Perfection of Ethical Conduct
Perfection of Fortitude
Perfection of Joyous Effort
Perfections of Meditative Stability and of Renunciation
Perfection of Wisdom
Perfections of Unshakable Resolve and of Determination
Perfections of Skillful Means, Power, and Exalted Wisdom
Pāramīs of Truthfulness, Love, and Equanimity
The Four Ways of Gathering Disciples

14. The Possibility of Awakening and Buddha Nature
Is Liberation Possible?
Pāli Tradition: Luminous Mind
Yogācāra School: Buddha Nature
Madhyamaka School: Buddha Nature
Tantrayāna: Buddha Nature
Chan: Buddha Nature, Bodhicitta, and True Suchness
Understanding Tathāgatagarbha

15. Tantra
Tantric Deities
Entering Vajrayāna
Excellent Features of Highest Yoga Tantra

16. Conclusion

About the Authors