I am interested in the earliest exposition of Buddhist philosophy/religion in general. That is,
what have scholars dated as the earliest text that exposits Buddhism as a whole, as opposed to
a handling of a specific circumstance (like death)?
I'm interested in a single teaching and not a corpus. It need not go into detail either.
If no such thing exists (due to fragmentary texts), are there any proposed reconstructions?
Links to the (English) texts would be greatly appreciated.
I have done some web searches, but am unsure if the results are correct, especially given the more
recent Gandharan finds.
Thanks in Advance!
Doing a school paper? I don't think you'll find a Cliff's Notes survey of your wish list. K.R. Norman has covered some of the ground you mention, below is a series of his lectures which may help, but I doubt there is Q of the Buddha's teachings to be found.A Philological Approach to Buddhism
by K.R. Norman
Anuvicca papañca nāmarūpaṃ
ajjhattaṃ bahiddhā ca rogamūlaṃ,
anuvidito tādi pavuccate tathattā
“Having known the naming of objects,
With its proliferation, its root in illness – within and without;
One is released from bondage to the root of all illness.
And thus is called the Knowing One – the Such.
– Sn. 3.6 (Sabhiyasuttaṃ)Secure your own mask before assisting others
. – NORTHWEST AIRLINES (Pre-Flight Instruction)A Handful of Leaves