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The Way of the Elders

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Therevada emerged as the preserver of the Way of the Elders. The three jewels of the Therevada are the Buddha, the Dharma and the Sangha.


The Voice of Dissent

Part 5

III. The Way of the Elders

A. Introduction (Three Refuges)

B. The Three Jewels of “Therevada”

1. 1st Jewel: The Buddha

2. 2nd Jewel: The Dharma

a. The Buddha vs. the Dharma

b. The Three Baskets

c. The First Council

i. Basket of Discipline – Vinaya Pitaka (monastic order – Upali)

ii. Basket of Discourses – Sūtra Pitaka (teaching of the Buddha – Ānanda)

iii. Basket of Higher Teachings – Abhidharma Pitaka (systemization of a wide range of philosophical reflections)

3. 3rd Jewel: The Sangha

a. monastic goal

b. vinaya

c. arhat focus

i. stream winner (on eight fold path, detached from the world and “thirsts”)

ii. once returner (will return to samsara wheel perhaps only one time, but certainly less than seven)

iii. non-returner (this person is in his last life, may stay to teach)

iv. arhat (not subject to rebirth)

C. The Second and Third Councils

1. Vaiśālī conference over rules of Vinaya (400 B.C.)

2. Pātaliputra conference called by Aśoka (250 BC)

divisions within Buddhism and the emergence of Therevada as the ‘preserver of the Way of the Elders”

Terms to know from this lecture:

Three refuges / three jewels
Vinaya Pitaka
Sūtra Pitaka
Abhidharma Pitaka

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