• 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. Emergence Of The Buddha

    Good karma means a good next life and bad karma means a bad next life. The only way to get out of the cycle is to have continuous good rebirths, which means you will enter Nirvana. All these backgrounds lead to the emergence of Buddhism in some way.

  2. Determination of Human Behaviours and The Metamorphosis

    Society destroys the relationship of Gregor as well as the relationship within his family. Furthermore, the description of his father's uniform highlights this message. His father wears the uniform at home as if he is "always ready for duty" (41)

  1. Life of the Buddha.

    However, the baby turned his feet on to the sage's head. Thus surprised, Asita took hold of the baby's feet and examined them very carefully, finding some marks on them. He got up and said, "This prince will become a very great teacher in this world."

  2. Teachings Now the ...

    This lecture was given to the five ascetics who he had trained with, prior to his enlightenment. The Buddha started the lecture by advising the men to give up just two extremes. These were indulgence in sensual pleasures and the tormenting of the body.

  1. Buddhism is one of the biggest religions founded in India in the 6th and ...

    Soon, however, a doctrine of the Maitreya, or "Future Buddha," began to assert itself (Evans 164). In this, Buddhists believed that a second Buddha would come and purify the world; they also believed that the first Buddha prophesied this future Buddha.

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

    For a long time many people believed Copernicus theory to just be nothing more than a convenient mathematical hypothesis, and it wasn't until it was finally proved to be correct during the scientific revolution that people really started to believe he was right.

  1. A discussion of the Buddhist beliefs about Buddha and Christian beliefs about Christ

    When the days of the feast were over, his parents started back home but they did not know that Jesus had stayed behind in Jerusalem. After a day they realised that Jesus was not with them, so they went back to find him.

  2. Buddhism - Select, describe and explain the events in the life of Siddhartha Gautama ...

    These give an idea of the ideal moral life for a lay Buddhist. The main thing in a moral Buddhist life is being able to go to the Buddha, his teachings, and the Sangha or followers of Buddha for guidance on the way to live.

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