Ancient Buddhists

Textual analysis and comparative discussion on early Buddhist sects and texts.
dcs
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Ancient Buddhists

Postby dcs » Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:47 am

Does anyone know what term Buddhists used to refer to themselves during the ancient and medieval time periods? I imagine that "Buddhist" must be a relatively recent term coined by Westerners during the Colonial era.

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tiltbillings
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby tiltbillings » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:34 am

I am sure it was not Buddha-wallahs.

I haven't a clue, but Buddha-sasana, is a way of referring to the Buddha's teachings; Dhammika, a follower of the Dhamma, but my guess is that some one will have answer.
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Ar scáth a chéile a mhaireas na daoine.
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Ben
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Ben » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:42 am

I recollect that the term "dhammika" is in the tipitaka and refers to one who practices the Dhamma.
Other terms: "savaka" or "hearer". Originally used for the Buddha's chief disciples but a wider usage was adopted later. Other ancient terms which I think became the names of ancient schools are Savakavadin and Vibhangavadin. If memory serves me well, a vibhangavadin was one who responded after careful analysis of a question or one who's path is analysis.
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Nyana » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:28 am

dcs wrote:Does anyone know what term Buddhists used to refer to themselves during the ancient and medieval time periods? I imagine that "Buddhist" must be a relatively recent term coined by Westerners during the Colonial era.

Yes, both "Buddhist" and "Buddhism" are modern terms.

In Pāli the term most frequently used to refer to the Buddhist religion is sāsana, meaning the "doctrine" or "teaching" (lit. "message"), or Buddhasāsana, meaning the "doctrine/teaching of the Buddha."

In Chinese the term for the Buddhist religion is fo jiao (佛教), meaning the "teaching of the Buddha."

In Tibetan the term for the Buddhist religion is nang pa'i chos, meaning the "dharma of the insiders," and a Buddhist is called a nang pa, meaning "insider."

All of these terms (i.e. sāsana, fo jiao, nang pa'i chos) are commonly translated into English as "Buddhism."

All the best,

Geoff

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Kare
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Kare » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:34 am

In the Pali text we find that those who follow a teacher, can be called sons and daughters of that teacher. So we sometimes find Buddhists called Buddhaputta (son of Buddha).
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Cittasanto » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:56 am

Kare has it to my readings also, but I also remember (not the pali) sons/daughters of the sakiyan, but I think both may of been interchangeable. the Buddha also refered to his disciples as his children though.

on another note Ajahn Chah also was given a prophesy of "not having a wife but 100's of children" before he was ordained! he did apparently wonder how this was possible.
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby ancientbuddhism » Thu Aug 11, 2011 2:37 pm

As for the °ism there is 'doctrine and discipline' (dhammavinaye), and another descriptor for a follower of such is ‘appamatto vihassati’ (DN.16) for one who ‘vigilantly abides’ in dhammavinaya.
Who are you?’ said the Caterpillar.

Alice replied rather shyly, ‘I—I hardly know, sir, just at present—at least I knew who I was when I got up this morning, but I think I must have been changed several times since then.’”

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gavesako
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby gavesako » Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:22 pm

These days in Thailand it is common to refer to dedicated Buddhists as "Buddha-māmaka" though I am not sure how old this Pali term is.
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Kare
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Kare » Thu Aug 11, 2011 6:07 pm

But I have to admit that when I first saw the heading "Ancient Buddhists", I thought it was something about us Buddhists who are approaching 70 ... :mrgreen:
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Nyana
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Nyana » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:19 pm

Kare wrote:But I have to admit that when I first saw the heading "Ancient Buddhists", I thought it was something about us Buddhists who are approaching 70 ... :mrgreen:

:rofl:

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Monkey Mind
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Monkey Mind » Thu Aug 11, 2011 7:46 pm

What about this term upasaka or upasika? I see it used sometimes, but I don't know the origin.
"As I am, so are others;
as others are, so am I."
Having thus identified self and others,
harm no one nor have them harmed.

Sutta Nipāta 3.710

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bodom
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby bodom » Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:43 pm

Monkey Mind wrote:What about this term upasaka or upasika? I see it used sometimes, but I don't know the origin.


upásaka: lit. 'sitting close by', i.e. a 'lay adherent', is any lay follower who is filled with faith and has taken refuge in the Buddha, his doctrine and his community of noble disciples (A. VIII, 25). His virtue is regarded as pure if he observes the 5 Precepts (pañca-síla; s. sikkhápada). He should avoid the following wrong ways of livelihood: trading in arms, in living beings, meat, alcohol and poison (A. V, 177). See also A. VIII, 75.

upásiká: 'female adherent';

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The heart of the path is SO simple. No need for long explanations. Give up clinging to love and hate, just rest with things as they are. That is all I do in my own practice. Do not try to become anything. Do not make yourself into anything. Do not be a meditator. Do not become enlightened. When you sit, let it be. When you walk, let it be. Grasp at nothing. Resist nothing. Of course, there are dozens of meditation techniques to develop samadhi and many kinds of vipassana. But it all comes back to this - just let it all be. Step over here where it is cool, out of the battle. - Ajahn Chah

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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Nori » Wed Sep 07, 2011 3:12 am

dcs wrote:Does anyone know what term Buddhists used to refer to themselves during the ancient and medieval time periods? I imagine that "Buddhist" must be a relatively recent term coined by Westerners during the Colonial era.

Samana, or Śramaṇas

Buddha was not the first Śramaṇa. His father, King Śuddhodana, while Siddhārtha was still a householder, feared that he would become a Śramaṇa. Śramaṇa's were a certain type of ascetics around at the time who shaved their heads and renounced the household life. They typically engaged in austerities, and meditation. Mahavira and Gotama the Buddha were both Śramaṇa contemporaries.

"Mahāvīra, the 24th Jina, and Gautama Buddha were leaders of their śramaṇa orders. According to Jain literature and the Buddhist Pali Canon, there were also some other śramaṇa leaders at that time." - quote from article below

The Buddha later realized that the sort of austerities they practiced had no benefit, and began his own path, up until his enlightenment. From this point on, his views/position greatly differed with the other Śramaṇa orders.
---
From Article:

Śramaṇa movement
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/s ... clnk&gl=us

Several śramaṇa movements are known to have existed before the 6th century BCE dating back to Indus valley civilization.

Samkhya and Yoga are two early and very important philosophies that follow the Sramana philosophy and which had their origins in the Indus Valley period of about 3000-2000 BCE. Yoga is probably the most important Sramana practice to date, which follows the Samkhya philosophy of liberating oneself from the grip of Prakriti (nature) through individual effort. Elaborate processes are outlined in Yoga to achieve individual liberation through breathing techniques (Pranayama), physical postures (Asanas) and meditations (Dhyana). Patanjali's Yoga sutra is one product (school) of this philosophy. Other Yogic schools and the Tantra traditions are also important derivatives and branches of the Sramana practices.

The movement later received a boost during the times of Mahavira and Buddha when Vedic ritualism had become the dominant tradition in certain parts of India. Śramaṇas adopted a path alternate to the Vedic rituals to achieve liberation, while renouncing household life. They typically engage in three types of activities: austerities, meditation, and associated theories (or views). As spiritual authorities, at times śramaṇa were at variance with traditional Brahmin authority, and they often recruited members from Brahmin communities themselves, such as Cānakya and Śāriputra[3].

Mahāvīra, the 24th Jina, and Gautama Buddha were leaders of their śramaṇa orders. According to Jain literature and the Buddhist Pali Canon, there were also some other śramaṇa leaders at that time. ...

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retrofuturist
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby retrofuturist » Wed Sep 07, 2011 5:23 am

Greetings,

bodom wrote:upásaka: lit. 'sitting close by',

For this reason I used to call my Buddhist work colleague who sat next to me "Upásika".

8-)

Metta,
Retro. :)
"When we transcend one level of truth, the new level becomes what is true for us. The previous one is now false. What one experiences may not be what is experienced by the world in general, but that may well be truer. (Ven. Nanananda)

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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby Bankei » Sat Oct 29, 2011 2:14 am

Sakyaputra
-----------------------
Bankei

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yamaka
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Re: Ancient Buddhists

Postby yamaka » Mon Nov 21, 2011 4:11 pm

Sometime Buddha has too addressed his disciple as [Kulaputta](Literally young man of a good family)

:anjali:


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