Four Noble Truths
The Four Noble Truths are the truths of the Noble Ones, the truths or realities which are understood by the worthy ones who have attained Nirvana. The truths are dukkha, the arising of dukkha, the cessation of dukkha, the four truths express the basic orientation of Buddhism, we crave and cling to impermanent states and things, which is dukkha, incapable of satisfying and painful. This keeps us caught in samsara, the cycle of repeated rebirth, dukkha. But there is a way to real happiness and to end this cycle. The meaning of the truths is as follows, incapable of satisfying, Life in this mundane world, with its craving and clinging to impermanent states and things, is dukkha and painful, the origination or arising of dukkha. Dukkha, and repeated life in this world, arises with taṇhā, craving for and clinging to impermanent states. This craving and clinging produces karma which leads to renewed becoming, keeping us trapped in rebirth and renewed dissatisfaction, the four truths provide a conceptual framework for introducing and explaining Buddhist thought, which has to be personally understood or experienced.
The formulation of the four truths, and their importance, developed over time, in the sutras, the four truths have both a symbolic and a propositional function. They represent the awakening and liberation of the Buddha, but the possibility of liberation for all sentient beings, the four truths are of central importance in the Theravada tradition, which holds to the idea that insight into the four truths is liberating in itself. They are less prominent in the Mahayana traditions, which emphasize insight into sunyata, the four truths are best known from their presentation in the Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta, which contains two sets of the four truths, while various other sets can be found in the Pali Canon. According to the Buddhist tradition, the Buddha first taught the four noble truths in the very first teaching he gave after attaining enlightenment, as recorded in the Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta. According to Norman, the Pali canon contains various shortened forms of the four truths, the mnemonic set, the earliest form of the mnemonic set was dukkham samudayo nirodho magga, without the reference to sacca or arya, which were added to the formula.
This full set contains grammatical errors, but were considered correct by the Pali tradition, as opposite to sukha, pleasure, it is better translated as pain. S. Cousins notes that the four truths are not restricted to the form where dukkha is the subject. Other forms take the world, the arising of the world or the āsavas, according to Cousins, the well-known form is simply shorthand for all of the forms. The world refers to the saṅkhāras, that is, all compounded things, the Pali terms ariya sacca are commonly translated as noble truths. This translation is a convention started by the earliest translators of Buddhist texts into English, this is just one of several possible translations. According to Paul Williams, here is no reason why the Pali expression ariyasaccani should be translated as noble truths
Mahayana is one of two main existing branches of Buddhism and a term for classification of Buddhist philosophies and practice. The Buddhist tradition of Vajrayana is sometimes classified as a part of Mahayana Buddhism, a bodhisattva who has accomplished this goal is called a samyaksaṃbuddha, or fully enlightened Buddha. A samyaksaṃbuddha can establish the Dharma and lead disciples to enlightenment, Mahayana Buddhists teach that enlightenment can be attained in a single lifetime, and this can be accomplished even by a layperson. The Mahāyāna tradition is the largest major tradition of Buddhism existing today, with 53. 2% of practitioners, major traditions of Mahāyāna Buddhism today include Chan Buddhism, Korean Seon, Japanese Zen, Pure Land Buddhism, and Nichiren Buddhism. It may include the Vajrayana traditions of Tiantai, Shingon Buddhism, and Tibetan Buddhism, according to Jan Nattier, the term Mahāyāna was originally an honorary synonym for Bodhisattvayāna — the vehicle of a bodhisattva seeking buddhahood for the benefit of all sentient beings.
The term Mahāyāna was therefore formed independently at a date as a synonym for the path. The earliest Mahāyāna texts often use the term Mahāyāna as a synonym for Bodhisattvayāna, the presumed dichotomy between Mahāyāna and Hīnayāna can be deceptive, as the two terms were not actually formed in relation to one another in the same era. Among the earliest and most important references to the term Mahāyāna are those that occur in the Lotus Sūtra dating between the 1st century BCE and the 1st century CE. Seishi Karashima has suggested that the term first used in an earlier Gandhāri Prakrit version of the Lotus Sūtra was not the term mahāyāna, the origins of Mahāyāna are still not completely understood. The earliest Western views of Mahāyāna assumed that it existed as a school in competition with the so-called Hīnayāna schools. The earliest textual evidence of Mahāyāna comes from sūtras originating around the beginning of the common era. There is no evidence that Mahāyāna ever referred to a formal school or sect of Buddhism, but rather that it existed as a certain set of ideals.
Membership in these nikāyas, or monastic sects, continues today with the Dharmaguptaka nikāya in East Asia, Mahāyāna was never a separate rival sect of the early schools. Paul Harrison clarifies that while monastic Mahāyānists belonged to a nikāya, from Chinese monks visiting India, we now know that both Mahāyāna and non-Mahāyāna monks in India often lived in the same monasteries side by side. Those who venerate the bodhisattvas and read the Mahayana sūtras are called the Mahāyānists, much of the early extant evidence for the origins of Mahāyāna comes from early Chinese translations of Mahāyāna texts. These Mahāyāna teachings were first propagated into China by Lokakṣema, the first translator of Mahāyāna sūtras into Chinese during the 2nd century CE. Guang Xing states, Several scholars have suggested that the Prajñāpāramitā probably developed among the Mahāsāṃghikas in southern India, in the Āndhra country, warder believes that the Mahāyāna originated in the south of India and almost certainly in the Āndhra country.
They note that the ancient Buddhist sites in the lower Kṛṣṇa Valley, including Amaravati, Nāgārjunakoṇḍā and Jaggayyapeṭa can be traced to at least the third century BCE, akira Hirakawa notes the evidence suggests that many Early Mahayana scriptures originated in South India
Tibetan Buddhist canon
The Tibetan Buddhist canon is a loosely defined list of sacred texts recognized by various sects of Tibetan Buddhism. In addition to texts from Early Buddhist and Mahayana sources. The Tibetan Canon underwent a final compilation in the 14th century by Buton Rinchen Drub, all texts presumably have a Sanskrit original, although in many cases the Tibetan text was translated from Chinese or other languages. Tengyur or Translated Treatises, is the section to which were assigned commentaries, the Tengyur contains 3626 texts in 224 Volumes. The Kangyur is divided into sections on Vinaya, Perfection of Wisdom Sutras, Avatamsaka and other sutras, when exactly the term Kangyur was first used is not known. Collections of canonical Buddhist texts already existed in the time of Trisong Detsen, the exact number of texts in the Kangyur is not fixed. Each editor takes responsibility for removing texts he considers spurious or adding new translations, currently there are about 12 available Kangyurs. These include the Derge, Narthang, Peking, Urga and Stog Palace versions, in addition, some canonical texts have been found in Tabo and Dunhuang which provide earlier exemplars to texts found in the Kangyur.
The majority of extant Kangyur editions appear to stem from the so-called Old Narthang Kangyur, though the Phukdrak, the stemma of the Kangyur have been well researched in particular by Helmut Eimer and Paul Harrison. A team of Indian and Tibetan scholars was assigned for the purpose, as a major step in this remarkable attempt at literary standardization, the bi-lingual glossary known as the Mahavyutpatti was successfully accomplished in the Tibetan horse year. The earliest catalogue compilation was recorded from the manuscript of the collection housed in the palace- pho-brang ‘phang-thang ka-med kyi gtsug-lag-kang in the Tibetan dog year. This cataloguing work became famous by the name of the palace, dkar-chag ldan-dkar-ma was compiled in the dragon year. Among these three catalogues, ldan-dkar-ma, included in the volume Jo of sna-tsogs in sde-ge bka’-bstan, is believed to be the only surviving so far. But recently a manuscript of dkar-chag phang-thang-ma is discovered and published from Tibet and it contains 961 titles listed under 34 subject headings with additional information of numbers of verses that contains in each text.
The ldan-dkar-ma catalogue comprises 735 titles and listed under a category of 27 subject headings. of words, canto, thus today we have a record of 73 million words contained in the bka’-’gyur & bstan-’gyur collection. According to the latest edition of Dharma Publication, the bKa’-‘gyur contains 1,115 texts, the bsTan-gyur contains 3,387 texts using 127,000 folios amounting to 850,000 lines and 48 millions words. The sum total of both these collections is 4,502 texts in 73 millions words, by fixing bampo to verses and to words of each of the textual contents, the individual works are interpolation and alteration. This further strengthened the authenticity of Tibetan Buddhist literature, thus, becomes the earliest to accomplish catalogue as inventory in the history of evolution of catalogue
The dharmachakra is one of the Ashtamangala of Indian religions such as Jainism and Hinduism. It has represented the Buddhist dharma, Gautama Buddhas teaching of the path to Nirvana and it is connected to the Noble Eightfold Path. The Sanskrit noun dharma is a derivation from the root dhṛ, which has a meaning of to hold, maintain and takes a meaning of what is established or firm, and hence law. It is derived from the Vedic Sanskrit n-stem dharman- with the bearer, supporter in the historical Vedic religion conceived of as an aspect of Ṛta. The wheel is the main attribute of Vishnu, the Vedic god of preservation and Parpola note Chakra sign appears frequently in Indus Valley civilization inscriptions, on several seals. Notably, a sequence of four signs on the Dholavira signboard, common Dharmachakra symbols consist of either 8 or 24 spokes. Unicode Symbol, ☸ According to the Puranas of Hinduism, only 24 Rishis or Sages managed the power of the Gayatri Mantra. The 24 letters of the Gayatri Mantra depict those 24 Rishis and this is a quote from the Mundaka Upanishad, the concluding part of the sacred Hindu Vedas.
The one who does not follow the wheel thus revolving, leads a sinful, vain life, the Dharmachakra is one of the ashtamangala of Buddhism. It is one of the oldest known Buddhist symbols found in Indian art, the Buddha is said to have set the dhammacakka in motion when he delivered his first sermon, which is described in the Dhammacakkappavattana Sutta. The wheel itself depicts ideas about the cycle of saṃsāra and furthermore the Noble Eightfold Path, Buddhism adopted the wheel as the main symbol of the chakravartin wheel-turner, the ideal king or universal monarch, symbolising the ability to cut through all obstacles and illusions. According to Harrison, the symbolism of the wheel of the law, the image, having been found in antiquity is referred to as Rimbo is an accepted symbol used in Nichiren Shoshu Buddhism, along with the Swastika. Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan, first Vice President of India has stated that the Ashoka Chakra of India represents the Dharmachakra, in Jainism, the Dharmachakra is worshipped as a symbol of the dharma.
Other cakras appear in other Indian traditions, e. g. Vishnus Sudarśanacakra, the former Flag of Sikkim featured a version of the dharmachakra. Thai people use a flag with a red dhammacakka as their Buddhist flag. The emblem of Mongolia includes a dharmachakra together with some other Buddhist attributes such as the padma, cintamani, a blue khata, the dharmachakra is the insignia for Buddhist chaplains in the United States Armed Forces. In non-Buddhist cultural contexts, an eight-spoked dharmachakra resembles a traditional ships wheel, as a nautical emblem, this image is a common sailor tattoo. In the Unicode computer standard, the dharmachakra is called the Wheel of Dharma, Buddhism for the West, Theravāda, Mahāyāna and Vajrayāna, a comprehensive review of Buddhist history and teachings from the time of the Buddha to the present day
Theravada Buddhism defines arhat or arahant as one who is worthy or as a perfected person having attained nirvana. Other Buddhist traditions have used the term for people far advanced along the path of Enlightenment, the understanding of the concept has changed over the centuries, and varies between different schools of Buddhism and different regions. A range of views on the attainment of arhats existed in the early Buddhist schools, the Sarvāstivāda, Kāśyapīya, Mahāsāṃghika, Ekavyāvahārika, Lokottaravāda, Bahuśrutīya, Prajñaptivāda, and Caitika schools all regarded arhats as imperfect in their attainments compared to buddhas. Mahayana Buddhist teachings urge followers to take up the path of a bodhisattva, the arhats, or at least the senior arhats, came to be widely regarded as moving beyond the state of personal freedom to join the Bodhisattva enterprise in their own way. They can be seen as the Buddhist equivalents of the Christian saints, apostles or early disciples and leaders of the faith.
The Sanskrit word arhat is a present participle coming from the verbal root √arh to deserve, cf. arha meriting, arhaṇa having a claim, being entitled, the word is used in the Ṛgveda with this sense of deserving. A common folk etymology derives the word from ari and hanta from the root √han to strike, to kill, professor Richard Gombrich has argued that the present participle is jarring and seems out of place when there is an adjective from the same root. Since Jains used two Prakrit forms of the word arahanta and arihanta, the etymology may well be the correct etymology. Gombrich argues that this stems from the metaphor as the Jain title jina conqueror, whence jaina related to the conqueror. The term arhat is often translated into English as arahat, the term arhat was translated into some East Asian languages phonetically as a transliterated term, exemplified in the Chinese āluóhàn, often shortened to simply luóhàn. This may appear in English as luohan or lohan, in Japanese the pronunciation of the same Chinese characters is rakan or arakan.
The Tibetan term for arhat was translated by meaning from Sanskrit and this translation, dgra bcom pa, means one who has destroyed the foes of afflictions. Thus the Tibetan translators understood the meaning of arhat to be ari-hanta, a range of views on the attainment of arhats existed in the early Buddhist schools. The Dharmaguptaka sect believed that the Buddha and those of the Two Vehicles, although they have one, the Mahīśāsaka and the Theravada regarded arhats and buddhas as being similar to one another. The 5th century Theravadin commentator Buddhaghosa regarded arhats as having completed the path to enlightenment, according to Bhikkhu Bodhi, the Pāli Canon portrays the Buddha declaring himself to be an arahant. The Mahayana discerned a hierarchy of attainments, with samyaksambuddhas at the top, mahāsattvas below that, pratyekabuddhas below that, but what was it that distinguished the bodhisattva from the sravaka, and ultimately the buddha from the arhat. The difference lay, more than anywhere else, in the orientation of the bodhisattva.
In pre-Buddhist India, the arhat, denoting a saintly person in general, was closely associated with miraculous power
Buddhist meditation refers to the meditative practices associated with the religion and philosophy of Buddhism. Core meditation techniques have been preserved in ancient Buddhist texts and have proliferated and diversified through teacher-student transmissions, Buddhists pursue meditation as part of the path toward Enlightenment and Nirvana. The closest words for meditation in the languages of Buddhism are bhāvanā. Buddhist meditation techniques have become popular in the wider world. Buddhist meditation encompasses a variety of techniques that aim to develop mindfulness, supramundane powers, tranquility. For those seeking school-specific meditation information, it may be appropriate to simply view the articles listed in the See section below. While there are some similar meditative practices — such as meditation and various recollections — that are used across Buddhist schools. Most classical and contemporary Buddhist meditation guides are school specific, only a few teachers attempt to synthesize and categorize practices from multiple Buddhist traditions.
The earliest tradition of Buddhist practice is preserved in the nikāya/āgamas, Right Concentration – culminating in jhanic absorptions through the meditative development of samatha. And implicitly in regard to, Right View – embodying wisdom traditionally attained through the development of vipassana founded on samatha. Classic texts in the Pali literature enumerating meditative subjects include the Satipatthana Sutta, in the Satipatthana Sutta, the Buddha identifies four foundations for mindfulness, the body, mind states and mental objects. Meditation on these subjects develops insight, in the Four Ways to Arahantship Sutta, Ven. In the Pali canon, the Buddha never mentions independent samatha and vipassana meditation practices, samatha, some meditation practices favor the development of samatha, others are conducive to the development of vipassana, while others are classically used for developing both mental qualities. Buddhaghosas forty meditation subjects are described in the Visuddhimagga, almost all of these are described in the early texts.
Buddhaghosa subsequently elaborates on the forty meditation subjects as follows, ten kasinas, water, air, yellow, white and limited-space. Ten kinds of foulness, the bloated, the livid, the festering, the cut-up, the gnawed, the scattered, the hacked and scattered, the bleeding, the worm-infested, and a skeleton. Ten recollections, Buddhānussaṭi, the Dhamma, the Sangha, generosity, the virtues of deities, the body, the breath, Four divine abodes, karuṇā, and upekkha. Four immaterial states, boundless space, boundless perception, according to Pali commentaries, breath meditation can lead one to the equanimous fourth jhanic absorption
Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya
It is located in the heart of South Mumbai near the Gateway of India. The museum was renamed in the 1990s or early 2000s after Shivaji, prior to this, Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, formerly the Victoria and Albert Museum, was established in 1855, just opposite Byculla railway station, Mumbai. This museum is located in side the Victoria Garden, now called Jijamata Udyaan and this Gothic architecture building was revived a few years ago by the Mumbai municipal corporation authorities. The building is built in the Indo-Saracenic style of architecture, incorporating elements of styles of architecture like the Mughal, Maratha. The museum building is surrounded by a garden of palm trees, the museum houses approximately 50,000 exhibits of ancient Indian history as well as objects from foreign lands, categorized primarily into three sections, Art and Natural History. The museum houses Indus Valley Civilization artefacts, and other relics from ancient India from the time of the Guptas, Mauryas and Rashtrakuta.
In 1904, some leading citizens of Bombay decided to provide a museum to commemorate the visit of the Prince of Wales, the future King George V. On 1 March 1907, the government of the Bombay Presidency granted the museum committee a piece of land called the Crescent Site, following an open design competition, in 1909 the architect George Wittet was commissioned to design the Museum building. Wittet had already worked on the design of the General Post Office and in 1911 would design one of Mumbais most famous landmarks, the museum was funded by the Royal Visit Memorial Funds. Additionally, the Government and the Municipality granted Rs.300,000, Sir Currimbhoy Ibrahim donated another Rs.300,000 and Sir Cowasji Jehangir gave Rs.50,000. The Museum was established under Bombay Act No, the museum is now maintained by annual grants from the Government and the Bombay Municipal Corporation. The latter pays for these grants from the interest accruing on the funds at the disposal of the Trust of the Museum.
The museum building was completed in 1915, but was used as a Childrens Welfare Centre, the Prince of Wales Museum was inaugurated on January 10,1922, by Lady Lloyd, the wife of George Lloyd, Governor of Bombay. The museum building is a Grade I Heritage Building of the city and was awarded first prize by the Bombay Chapter of the Indian Heritage Society for heritage building maintenance in 1990. In 1998 the Museum was renamed Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya after the king and founder of the Maratha Empire. It is surrounded by a garden of trees and formal flower beds. The museum building, built of locally quarried grey Kurla basalt and it is a three-storied rectangular structure, capped by a dome set upon a base, which adds an additional storey in the centre of the building. A cluster of pinnacles, topped with miniature domes surround the central dome, the building incorporates features like Islamic dome with a finial along with protruding balconies and inlaid floors, inspired by Mughal palace architecture
Vajrayāna, Mantrayāna, Esoteric Buddhism and Tantric Buddhism refer to the Buddhist tradition of Tantra, an esoteric system of beliefs and practices that developed in medieval India. Vajrayāna is usually translated as Diamond Vehicle or Thunderbolt Vehicle, referring to the Vajra, according to Vajrayāna scriptures, the term Vajrayāna refers to one of three vehicles or routes to enlightenment, the other two being the Śrāvakayāna and Mahāyāna. Founded by Indian Mahāsiddhas, Vajrayāna subscribes to the known as the Buddhist Tantras. Elements of Tantric Buddhism can be traced back to groups of wandering yogis called mahasiddhas. These yogic circles came together in tantric feasts often in sacred sites and places which included dancing, sex rites and it is interesting to note that at least two of the Mahasiddhas given in the Buddhist literature are actually names for Shaiva Nath saints who practiced Hatha Yoga. According to Schumann, a movement called Sahaja-siddhi developed in the 8th century in Bengal and it was dominated by long-haired, wandering yogis called mahasiddhas who openly challenged and ridiculed the Buddhist establishment.
The Mahasiddhas pursued siddhis, magical powers such as flight and Extrasensory perception as well as liberation, earlier Mahayana sutras already contained some elements which are emphasized in the Tantras, such as mantras and dharani. The practice of visualization of Buddhas such as Amitabha is seen in texts like the Longer Sukhāvatīvyūha Sūtra. Vajrayana developed a large corpus of texts called the Buddhist Tantras, some of which can be traced to at least the 7th century CE, the dating of the tantras is a difficult, indeed an impossible task according to David Snellgrove. The earliest such texts include the Mahavairocana Tantra and the Guhyasamāja Tantra. Later monastic Vajrayana Buddhists reinterpreted and internalized these radically transgressive and taboo practices as metaphors, the Kalachakra tantra developed in the 10th century. It is farthest removed from the earlier Buddhist traditions, and incorporates concepts of messianism, various classes of Vajrayana literature developed as a result of royal courts sponsoring both Buddhism and Saivism.
According to Alexis Sanderson, the Vajrayana Yogini-tantras draw extensively from Shaiva Bhairava tantras classified as Vidyapitha, there is even direct borrowing of passages from Saiva texts. The Guhyasiddhi of Padmavajra, an associated with the Guhyasamaja tradition, prescribes acting as a Shaiva guru and initiating members into Saiva Siddhanta scriptures. The Samvara tantra texts adopted the pitha list from the Shaiva text Tantrasadbhava, according to Louis de La Vallée-Poussin and Alex Wayman, the view of the Vajrayana is based on Mahayana Buddhist philosophy, mainly the Madhyamaka and Yogacara schools. The major difference seen by Vajrayana thinkers is Tantras superiority due to being a vehicle to liberation containing many skillful methods of tantric ritual. The doctrine of Buddha-nature, as outlined in the Ratnagotravibhāga of Asanga, was an important theory which became the basis for Tantric views, by passion the world is bound, by passion too it is released, but by heretical Buddhists this practice of reversals is not known.
As Snellgrove notes, this doctrine is present in Asangas Mahayana-sutra-alamkara-karika and therefore it is possible that he was aware of Tantric techniques