Study Guide

The World's Religions - Chapter III, Buddhism, The Diamond Thunderbolt, Summary & Analysis

Huston Smith
This Study Guide consists of approximately 51 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The World's Religions.
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Chapter III, Buddhism, The Diamond Thunderbolt, Summary and Analysis

Vajra, originally the thunderbolt of Indra (from Hinduism), was transformed into the diamond scepter of Buddhism. The Tibetans perfected this version of Buddhism, and its main addition was the tantra. The Tibetans claim no special differentiation from mainstream Buddhism other than that it enables achieving nirvana within a single lifetime. The three M's of Tantric Buddhism are mantras, which convert sounds into holy formulas, mudras, which are elaborate hand gestures, and mandalas, which offer visual icons. The temporal and spiritual authority of Tibetan Buddhism is the Dalai Lama, who is perpetually reincarnated.

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This section contains 110 words
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