Mahayana Buddhism - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Religious Practices

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 105 pages of information about Mahayana Buddhism.
This section contains 4,778 words
(approx. 16 pages at 300 words per page)
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Buddhism: Mahayana Buddhism

FOUNDED: c. 200 C.E.
RELIGIONAS AS A PERCENTAGE OF WORLD POPULATION: 3.2 percent

Overview

Mahayana (Grand Method) Buddhism began in India as a movement to address issues that had arisen in the existing traditions, which the Mahayana followers subsequently referred to derogatorily as Hinayana (Lower, or Inferior, Method). These questions concerned the status and nature of the arhat (fully enlightened being), the nature of the Buddha (that is, whether or not the Buddha should be considered a historical figure or an a historical and transcendental being), and the nature of reality. They began to emerge around the beginning of the Common Era among numerous sects of pre-Mahayana Buddhists. Each sect addressed only some of the questions, and each defined its own answers. By the second century C.E., however, the various ideas began to consolidate. They found their primary expression in the Perfection of Wisdom Sutras...

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This section contains 4,778 words
(approx. 16 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Mahayana Buddhism Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Religious Practices
Mahayana Buddhism from Encyclopedia of Religious Practices. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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