Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

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Parth
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Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby Parth » Sat Mar 12, 2011 7:34 pm

Does anybody find mention of Gods of Hindu panthion in the Suttas i.e. other than Indra (shaka) and Bramha. I mean Krishna / Shiva / Vishnu etc or religious texts other than Vedas ?

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Parth

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby adeh » Sat Mar 12, 2011 8:20 pm

Pajapati and Yama are mentioned in the Suttas...

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby adeh » Sat Mar 12, 2011 8:42 pm

I believe that Vishnu and Shiva (Rudra) were minor deities in Buddhas life time and they didn't become principal deities until around the 1st or 2nd century C.E. when works such as the Mahabharata, the Ramayana and the Bhagavad Gita first appeared, even though Hindus claim these works are much older.

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby adeh » Sat Mar 12, 2011 9:01 pm

I just found something interesting in the Digha Nikaya in the Mahasamaya Sutta (Sutta 20)...it mentions Vishnu, which it appears is Venhu in Pali, and it mentions Varuna but as a plural ''the Varunas''...it also mentions Garuda but also as a plural ''fierce garuda birds''.....
From Wikipedia:
Many of the other gods in the Pali Canon find a common mythological role in Hindu literature. Some common gods and goddesses are Indra, Aapo (Varuna), Vayo (Vayu), Tejo (Agni), Surya, Pajapati (Prajapati), Soma, Yasa, Venhu (Visnu), Mahadeva (Siva), Vijja (Saraswati), Usha, Pathavi (Prithvi) Sri (Lakshmi) Kuvera (Kubera), several yakkhas (Yakshas), gandhabbas (Gandharvas), Nāgas, garula (Garuda), sons of Bali, Veroca, etc.

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby Parth » Sun Mar 13, 2011 5:05 am

The point I intend verifing is that can Suttas be used a proof that texts like Mahabharata / Geeta / Ramayana were actually written post Buddha's passing. The Mahabharata for one is mythically dated 5000 years from today ie about 2,500 years before Buddha, given this, Geeta should have formed part of main thought at that time but from whatever limited reading I have made of Suttas while people do mention / Buddha in his responses mentions the ancient sages and while yagnas are offered to various Gods of that time in the society but nowhere does anybody mention Krishna / Geeta which is surprising given that Geeta delves into similar things as Buddha's teachings.

This leads to another speculation which is whether Mahabharata (incl Geeta )/ Ramayana were written as part of strategy for revival of Bramhanical society after the damage it had suffered due to Buddha's teachings or it could also be due to the vaccum created by decline of Dhamma in the land of its origin, India.

Metta

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby Ben » Sun Mar 13, 2011 5:12 am

Greetings Parth

On the historicity of the upanishads it might be worthwhile reading some of RF Gombrich's works, particularly 'what the buddha thought'.
kind regards

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby adeh » Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:57 pm

The Mahabharata is actually a very old story that predates the Buddha....I watched a documentary series not so long ago that talked about it. It said that the story is based on events that happened around about 8-900 BCE..the documentary was Micheal Woods The Story of India..part 3 I think...

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby Parth » Mon Mar 14, 2011 5:16 pm

Then given that Geeta is a part of Mahabharata and delves into similar aspects of conquering desires etc., moksha (freedom from rebirth) etc. why does nobody mention / debate those concepts with Buddha.

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby manjughosamani » Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:29 pm

Hello,

parth wrote:Then given that Geeta is a part of Mahabharata and delves into similar aspects of conquering desires etc., moksha (freedom from rebirth) etc. why does nobody mention / debate those concepts with Buddha.


The Mahābhārata was not composed by one author at one point in time but is an composite work that most likely begun to take shape during the Buddha's lifetime but was not committed to its final form for roughly 800 more years. The portion known as the Bhagavad Gīta was most likely not composed until sometime in the first centuries of the common era.

The story told reflects a more ancient setting, but the text itself does not predate the Buddha.

Wishing you all the best.
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Atha nibbindati dukkhe esa maggo visuddhiyā.

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby Parth » Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:16 pm

mañjughosamaṇi wrote:

The Mahābhārata was not composed by one author at one point in time but is an composite work that most likely begun to take shape during the Buddha's lifetime but was not committed to its final form for roughly 800 more years. The portion known as the Bhagavad Gīta was most likely not composed until sometime in the first centuries of the common era.

The story told reflects a more ancient setting, but the text itself does not predate the Buddha.


So it coould be that Mahabharata (incl Geeta )/ Ramayana were written as part of strategy for revival of Bramhanical society after the damage it had suffered due to Buddha's teachings or it could also be due to the vaccum created by decline of Dhamma in the land of its origin, India.

Metta

Parth

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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby manjughosamani » Tue Mar 15, 2011 10:46 pm

Hello,

parth wrote:So it coould be that Mahabharata (incl Geeta )/ Ramayana were written as part of strategy for revival of Bramhanical society after the damage it had suffered due to Buddha's teachings or it could also be due to the vaccum created by decline of Dhamma in the land of its origin, India.


I don't know that Brahmanical society suffered so much under Buddhism. Many of the most famous Buddhists from the various early schools were from Brahman families and the Buddha seemed to get on well with many of the Brahmans he coversed with as recorded in the Suttas. The various Indian religious traditions were pretty adaptive and seemed to borrow from Buddhism pretty liberally. The Gīta seems to mostly continue with themes already developed in early Upaniśads.

Wishing you all the best.
Sabbe saṅkhārā anicca'ti yadā paññāya passati
Atha nibbindati dukkhe esa maggo visuddhiyā.

Parth
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Re: Mention of Hindu Gods in Suttas

Postby Parth » Wed Mar 16, 2011 5:12 pm

Dear mañjughosamaṇi,

You wrote:
I don't know that Brahmanical society suffered so much under Buddhism. Many of the most famous Buddhists from the various early schools were from Brahman families and the Buddha seemed to get on well with many of the Brahmans he coversed with as recorded in the Suttas.


By bramhanical society I meant not the people who were in search of truth (like sariputta / Moggalana/ kassapa) but those who earned their livelihood by conducting various rites and rituals etc. There are examples of such people having conflict with Buddha's teachings even during his lifetime, Buddha / some of his disciples were able to invoke a change of heart in many of them is a different matter. And please none of his students were 'Buddhists' Buddha never taught 'Buddhism' he taught 'dhamma' which is universal. On conflict with at least parts of bramhanical society, please reconcile this :

In order to delude the demons, he (Lord Buddha) was present in the form of a child on the way while the foolish Jina (a demon), imagined him to be his son. Later on, Lord Sri Hari (as avatara-buddha) expertly deluded Jina and other demons by his strong words of non-violence.By deluding the demons Buddha was able to get back the power to the devas. – Brahmanda Purana
` The delusion of the false teacher paused not with the conversion of the Daityas to the Jaina and Bauddha heresies, but with various erroneous tenets he prevailed upon them to apostatize, until the whole were led astray, and deserted the doctrines and observances inculculated bythe 3 Vedas. [The teacher was an illusory form of Vishnu, while the Daityas could not be destroyed whilst they performed the sacred rites adn were slain b the gods]'
-- [V.P. Bk III Ch XVIII p. 271]
At this time, reminded of the Kali Age, the god Vishnu became born as Gautama, the Shakyamuni, and taught the Buddhist dharma for ten years. Then Shuddodana ruled for twenty years, and Shakyasimha for twenty. At the first stage of the Kali Age, the path of the Vedas was destroyed and all men became Buddhists. Those who sought refuge with Vishnu were deluded.
- Bhavishya Purana
"tatah kalau sampravritte sammohaya sura-dvisham buddho namnañjana-sutah kikateshu bhavishyati
Then, in the beginning of Kali-yuga [he] will become the Buddha by name, the son of Anjana, in Bihar, for the purpose of confusing those who were enemies of the devas. - (srimad-bhagavatam 1.3.24)


Further Adi Shankaracharya was in no way kind towards Buddhism

You wrote:
The various Indian religious traditions were pretty adaptive and seemed to borrow from Buddhism pretty liberally. The Gīta seems to mostly continue with themes already developed in early Upaniśads.


the point being put to test by me here is very different i.e. whether Mahabharta /Gita was written prior to post Buddha's passing and latter seems to be the case.

Regards

Parth


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