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Buddhism - Lesson 6

Mahayana Buddhism: New Insights

The three insights of Mahayana Buddhism are that Buddha taught secret truths, the Buddha was a divine being and a dharmic concept, not just an earthly figure, and Gautama was not the only Buddha.

Lesson 6
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Mahayana Buddhism: New Insights

The Emergence of the “Great Vehicle”

Part 1
 

I. Mahayana Buddhism: New Insights / New Doctrines

A. Introduction

B. The Mahasanghikas become a movement

1. Hinayana “Little Vehicle”

2. Mahayana “Great Vehicle”

C. Three Insights of Mahayana Buddhism

1. Insight #1: Buddha taught secret truths

a. Second Turn of the Wheel of Dharma – new sutras

b. Higher Wisdom / higher consciousness

c. Expanded transcendent destinations between ‘now’ & ‘nirvana’

d. Doctrine of expedient means

2. Insight #2: The Buddha was a divine being and a dharmic concept, not just an earthly figure

3. Insight #3: Gautama was not the only Buddha (multiplied Buddhas)

a. arhat path vs. Bodhisattva path

b. monastic path leading to arhathood and nirvana

c. messianic path leading to bodhicittta and nirvana

D. Three fold body of Buddha

1. Apparition Body (historical body)

2. Dharma Body (body of essence)

3. Body of Bliss



Terms to Know from this lecture:

mahasanghikas
Hinayana
Mahayana
Second turn of the Wheel of Dharma
Arhat
Bodhisattva
Bodhicitta – The aspiration to attain Buddhahood for the sake of all living things
apparition body
dharma body
Body of bliss


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This course is an overview of the religion of Buddhism. We are missing four lectures which cover the points in the outline: the rise of Buddhist philosophy, Vajranyana Buddhism, Korean Buddhism and Buddhism in America. Dr. Tennent will record these lessons the next time he lectures on Buddhism.

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