Original Buddhist Sources: A Reader / Edition 1

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Bringing together essential materials on the origins and development of Buddhist traditions from India, Sri Lanka, Tibet, China, and Japan, this anthology provides the broadest selection of primary source Buddhist literature available to date.

The volume is divided into two major parts: Theravada and Mahayana forms of Buddhism. The first section presents selections that explore major themes in Buddhist thought such as causality, Four Noble Truths, the doctrine of non-self, nibbana, meditation, and ethics, as well as literature about monastic life and regulations, women, and hagiography.

The second part includes selections from so-called wisdom literature and texts that represent the three major schools of Mahayana Buddhism: Pure Land, Madhyamika, and Yogacara. Selections also include sources from some of the major Chinese Buddhist schools such as Hua-yen, T'ien T'ai, Pure Land, and Ch'an. Readings by thinkers such as Tantric Buddhist reformer Tsong Khapa, Pure Land leaders Honen, Shinran, and Nichiren, as well as Zen Buddhists Dogen and Hakuin provide a perspective on regional and national traditions.

In addition to the general introduction, each major section is introduced by an essay that places the selections within the context of Buddhist history. This comprehensive reader stands on its own as an indispensable anthology of original textual sources for courses in Buddhism, while also serving as a companion volume to the text The Different Paths of Buddhism: A Narrative-Historical Introduction.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In recent decades, English translations have made the vast, many-languaged literature of Buddhist sacred texts increasingly available to American readers, both in anthologies and as individual works (e.g.,the Diamond Sutra). Olson (religious studies, Allegheny Coll.) offers this anthology to supplement his college text, The Different Paths of Buddhism: A Narrative-Historical Introduction. In the first part, sometimes heavily trimmed selections from the Theravada tradition are arranged according to basic teaching (e.g., the life of the Buddha, the Four Noble Truths, Nirvana). The second part presents similarly edited Mahayana texts arranged primarily by school (e.g., Madhyamika, Tibetan, Chan, Pure Land). Sections and the chapters within them are introduced with an essay placing that literature in historic, religious, and geographic contexts. Recommended for public and academic libraries owning The Different Paths of Buddhism and where needed to supplement Donald Lopez's Buddhist Scriptures.-James R. Kuhlman, Univ. of North Carolina Lib., Asheville Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780813535647
  • Publisher: Rutgers University Press
  • Publication date: 8/1/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 1,115,417
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.82 (d)

Meet the Author

CARL OLSON is a professor of religious studies at Allegheny College. His numerous books include Zen and the Art of Postmodern Philosophy: Two Paths of Liberation from the Representational Mode of Thinking and Indian Philosophers and Postmodern Thinkers: Dialogues on the Margins of Culture.
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Table of Contents

Pt. I Selections from the Theravada tradition 9
1 Jataka tales (former lives of the Buddha) 17
2 Life of the Buddha 26
3 Teachings of the Buddha : causality 38
4 Teachings of the Buddha : four noble truths 46
5 Teachings of the Buddha : non-self 55
6 Teachings of the Buddha : Nibbana 60
7 Teachings of the Buddha : meditation 69
8 Teachings of the Buddha : ethical issues and virtues 81
9 Monastic life and regulations 96
10 The feminine thread in Theravada Buddhism 109
11 Theravada hagiographic literature 124
Pt. II Selections from the Mahayana tradition 137
12 Prajnaparamita literature 163
13 Maharatnakuta Sutra 171
14 The true lion's roar of Queen Srimala 178
15 Pure land Sutra 189
16 Mahayana school of thought : Madhyamika 198
17 Mahayana school of thought : Yogacara 213
18 Tibetan Buddhist tradition 225
19 Chinese Buddhist tradition 265
20 Japanese Buddhist tradition 308
21 Mahayana hagiographic literature 358
22 The feminine thread in Mahayana literature 371
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