• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Buddhism. Many aspects of the belief system represent notions of continuity and change including gender roles, sacred places and scripts and the contemporary issue of technology.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

´╗┐Buddhism is an ever-growing religion with approximately 350 million adherents worldwide, prominently found in Thailand, Indo-China, Burma, and Sri Lanka[1]. The word ?Buddhism? comes from ?Budhi? which literally means ?to awaken?. This essentially makes up the basis for the belief system as it originated when Siddhartha Gautama, an Indian prince commonly known as Buddha, was himself awakened during his lifetime. It is every adherent?s goal in life to reach this same state of enlightenment, or nirvana. Not only is Buddhism a religion, it is often a way of life for many Buddhists[2]. Buddhism is a traditionalistic religion containing aspects that remain constant over time but is also highly adaptable and advances with current global progressions and issues. Many aspects of the belief system represent notions of continuity and change including gender roles, sacred places and scripts and the contemporary issue of technology. Buddhism has been subject to both aspects of continuity and change almost from the time the religion originated. This was clearly highlighted in the role and acceptance of dissent in the belief system in 383BC. This was after Buddha?s death in a time known as the Second Council where a large change occurred and the significant split into two variants of the religion occurred. This was due to arising conflicting interpretations of Buddha?s teachings and the meaning behind them. ...read more.

Middle

In the Vajrayana variant there are many female Buddhas and bodhisattva including Green Tara, Kuan Yin and prajnaparamita who represents the mother of all Buddha?s as she is the anicca[11]. As well as this, the rapid increase of the religion, most notably in Australia, will undoubtedly create an incline in discussion of gender issues as it is a nation based on equality and multiculturalism. Buddhist sacred places and scripts are a highly traditional and continual aspect of the religion. Despite the split into separate variants of Buddhism, the message of Buddha remains the same for all. Initially the teachings of Buddha were passed down through oral tradition although as time progressed the four major councils formed the sangha and dharma consistent in practice and doctrine and had them form a written canon, the Tipitaka[12]. This text has not changed in any way since 250BCE and continues to be the foundation of all Buddhist communities. This is one of only a few things that have remained constant despite divergence and change within the religion. As time progressed, the Mahayana variant also created sacred texts, usually attributed to bodhisattva. These texts held a great amount of authority as they were held in likeness to the words of Buddha himself. These texts are an essential part of Buddhism as they are used in important activities and rituals that remain constant with tradition over time. ...read more.

Conclusion

With this comes the continuation of traditional aspects as well as applying these in ways to suit the consensus of different cultures, most notably western. Many influencing factors attribute to the continuity and change of Buddhism including gender roles, sacred places and scripts and contemporary issues. Each of these play a fundamental role in underpinning the belief system in contemporary society and the religion will inevitability continue to change given its highly adaptable nature. ________________ [1] Buddhanet, 2012, Buddha Dharma Education Association Inc., global, http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/history/bud_statwrld.htm [2] Buddhanet, 2012, Buddha Dharma Education Association Inc., global, http://www.buddhanet.net/e-learning/5minbud.htm [3] Buddhism?s Impact and Appeal in the West, Culturescope Volume 79, April 2006 [4] Vajrayana Institute, 2012, Vajrayana Buddhism, Australia, http://www.vajrayana.com.au/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=56&Itemid=81 [5] Buddhism?s Impact and Appeal in the West, Culturescope Volume 79, April 2006 [6] TSC Learning, 2012, TSC Learning Inc., Australia, http://www.tsclearning.catholic.edu.au/groups/societyculture/weblog/2953c/Belief_System__Buddhism__Gender_Roles.html [7] Buddhanet, 2012, Buddha Dharma Education Association Inc., global, http://www.buddhanet.net/ftp07.htm [8] Buddhism?s Impact and Appeal in the West, Culturescope Volume 79, April 2006 [9] Buddhanet, 2012, Buddha Dharma Education Association Inc., global, Buddhanet.com [10] Enabling Organisation, 2012, BSQ Tracts on Buddhism No.7, http://www.enabling.org/ia/vipassana/Archive/D/DeSilva/WomenInBuddhism/womenInBuddhismSwarnaDeSilva.html [11] Vajrayana Institute, 2012, Vajrayana Buddhism, Australia, http://www.vajrayana.com.au/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=56&Itemid=81 [12] Buddhism?s Impact and Appeal in the West, Culturescope Volume 79, April 2006 [13] Buddhism?s Impact and Appeal in the West, Culturescope Volume 79, April 2006 [14] Buddhism?s Impact and Appeal in the West, Culturescope Volume 79, April 2006 [15] Buddhanet, 2012, Buddha Dharma Education Association Inc., global, Buddhanet.com [16] Buddhism Australia, 2012, Census date from ABS, Australia, http://www.buddhismaustralia.org/census2001.htm ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Buddhism section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Buddhism essays

  1. Compare the Buddhist understandings of life after death with on other view

    Many Catholics also believe in the existence of purgatory, a place where the soul is cleansed of sins so it is able to go to heaven in the presence of God.

  2. In what ways and to what extent did the European Enlightenment challenge established sources ...

    The enlightenment is often linked to the scientific revolution, as they happened around the same time period, and many scientific discoveries effected the enlightenment.

  1. Today is a result of yesterday, tomorrow is a result of today.(TM) To what ...

    The word 'being', however, should not be thought of as a 'spirit' or 'soul' but consciousness being operated on by the force of (karma) that determines where the rebirth will be (according to previous deeds). When looking at such issue, we can see how it is an obvious moral problem

  2. Emergence Of The Buddha

    They also worshipped a pantheon of gods. They believed in the highest form of God, the Brahman who was the highest level of the caste system. There was an amalgamation of Indo and Aryans that became the religion Hinduism.

  1. Free essay

    Comparison Study of Jainism and Buddhism

    This great Asian religion teaches the practice of the observance of moral precepts. The basic doctrines include the four noble truths taught by the Buddha. Since it was first introduced into China from India, Buddhism has had a history that has been characterized by periods of sometimes awkward and irregular development.

  2. The Life of the Buddha.

    Bodhisattva vow, and was the final hurdle of the Bodhisattva Path, and after enlightenment, the BUDDHA could now teach, and help others more supremely than ever before. After a life of purity and sincerity of teaching, the life of Siddhartha Gautama, had come to an end.

  1. Comparing Gotma to Siddhartha, why did Siddhartha reach his goal and not Gotma?

    everything around you will be missed and wisdom and understanding cannot be found. But even after Siddhartha's speech Govinda did not understand, he still could not comprehend what Siddhartha was trying to convey.

  2. Explain the Concepts of Anicca and Anatta

    Buddhists believe that everything has an unchanging essence and that change affects only their secondary qualities and so if a branch is chopped off of a tree, the remaining part of the tree is still considered to be a tree.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work