සාකච්ඡාව:මූලාශ්ර හා සබැඳි
Traditionally, it is held that the Mahasanghika school came into existence as a result of a dispute over monastic practice. They also seem to have emphasized the supramundane nature of the Buddha, so they were accused of preaching that the Buddha had the attributes of a god. As a result of the conflict over monastic discipline, coupled with their controversial views on the nature of the Buddha, the Mahasanghikas were expelled, thus forming two separate Buddhist lines: the Sthaviravada and the Mahasanghika.
During the course of several centuries, both the Sthaviravada and the Mahasanghika schools underwent many transformations, originating different schools. The Theravada school, which still lives in our day, emerged from the Sthaviravada line, and is the dominant form of Buddhism in Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, Sri Lanka, and Thailand. The Mahasanghika school eventually disappeared as an ordination tradition.
During the 1st century CE, while the oldest Buddhist groups were growing in south and south-east Asia, a new Buddhist school named Mahayana (“Great Vehicle”) originated in northern India. This school had a more adaptable approach and was open to doctrinal innovations. Mahayama Buddhism is today the dominant form of Buddhism in Nepal, Tibet, China, Japan, Mongolia, Korea, and Vietnam.
බෙදීමට බලපෑ කරුනු[සංස්කරණය]
The Mahasanghika faction held that these rules could be ignored and that disobeying them did not constitute a violation of the monastic conduct, which the Sthavirah faction did not accept.
Some doctrinal innovations of the Mahasanghika also contibuted to the conflict. The sources explaining the doctrinal position of the Mahasanghika school are very scarce, so we know very little about it. They seem to have emphasized the supramundane nature of the Buddha, they were accused of preaching that the Buddha had the attributes of a god. As a result of the conflict over monastic discipline, coupled with their controversial views on the nature of the Buddha, the Mahasanghikas were expelled. Other accounts say that the members of this school claimed that a monk named Mahadeva who had achieved Nirvana, continued to display certain human weaknesses, such as ignorance, doubt and a capacity to be misled. The Sthavirah rejected these claims. The Mahasanghika ideas have a strong resemblance to Mahayana Buddhism: whether Mahasanghika influenced the Mahayana or vice versa is still debated.
Different Buddhist branches emerged from the Mahasanghika school including the Lokottaravada school that produced a famous biography of the Buddha known as Mahavastu. The Mahasanghika school was found throughout India and present-day Afghanistan, but it eventually disappeared as an ordination tradition.
BUDDHIST EXPANSION ACROSS SOUTHERN ASIA
During the time of Ashoka’s reign, trade routes were opened through southern India. Some of the merchants using these roads were Buddhists who took their religion with them. Buddhist monks also used these roads for missionary activity.
After reaching Sri Lanka, Buddhism crossed the sea into Myanmar (Burma): Despite the fact that some Burmese accounts say that the Buddha himself converted the inhabitants of Lower and Upper Myanmar, historical evidence suggests otherwise. Buddhism co-existed in Myanmar with other traditions such as Brahmanism and various locals animists cults. The records of a Chinese Buddhist pilgrim named Xuanzang (Hsüan-tsang, 602-664 CE) state that in the ancient city of Pyu (the capital of the Kingdom of Sri Ksetra, present day Myanmar), a number of early Buddhist schools were active. After Myanmar, Buddhism travelled into Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Laos, around 200 CE. The presence of Buddhism in Indonesia and the Malay peninsula is supported by archaeological records from about the 5th century CE.
While Buddhism was flourishing all over the rest of Asia, its importance in India gradually diminished. Two important factors contributed to this process: a number of Muslim invasions, and the advancement of Hinduism, which incorporated the Buddha as part of the pantheon of endless gods; he came to be regarded as one of the many manifestations of the god Vishnu. In the end, the Buddha was swallowed up by the realm of Hindu gods, his importance diminished, and in the very land where it was born, Buddhism dwindled to be practiced by very few.
BUDDHIST EXPANSION ACROSS CENTRAL & EAST ASIA[සංස්කරණය]
Buddhism entered China during the Han dynasty (206 BCE-220 CE): The first Buddhist missionaries accompanied merchant caravans that travelled using the Silk Road, probably during the 1st century BCE. The majority of these missionaries belonged to the Mahayana school.
The initial stage of Buddhism is China was not very promising. Chinese culture had a long-established intellectual and religious tradition and a strong sense of cultural superiority that did not help the reception of Buddhist ideas. Many of the Buddhist ways were considered alien by the Chinese and even contrary to the Confucian ideals that dominated the ruling aristocracy. The monastic order received a serious set of critiques: It was considered unproductive and therefore was seen as placing an unnecessary economic burden on the population, and the independence from secular authority emphasized by the monks was seen as an attempt to undermine the traditional authority of the emperor.
Despite its difficult beginning, Buddhism managed to build a solid presence in China towards the fall of the Han dynasty on 220 CE, and its growth accelerated during the time of disunion and political chaos that dominated China during the Six Dynasties period (220-589 CE). The collapse of the imperial order made many Chinese skeptical about the Confucian ideologies and more open to foreign ideas. Also, the universal spirit of Buddhist teachings made it attractive to many non-Chinese ruler in the north who were looking to legitimate political power. Eventually, Buddhism in China grew strong, deeply influencing virtually every aspect of its culture.
From China, Buddhism entered Korea in 372 CE, during the reign of King Sosurim, the ruler of the Kingdom of Koguryo, or so it is stated in official records. There is archaeological evidence that suggests that Buddhism was known in Korea from an earlier time.
The official introduction of Buddhism in Tibet (according to Tibetan records) took place during the reign of the first Tibetan emperor Srong btsan sgam po (Songtsen gampo, 617-649/650 CE), although we know that the proto-Tibetan people had been in touch with Buddhism from an earlier time, through Buddhist merchants and missionaries. Buddhism grew powerful in Tibet, absorbing the local pre-Buddhist Tibetan religions. Caught between China and India, Tibet received monks from both sides and tension between Chinese and Indian Buddhist practice and ideology turned out to be inevitable. From 792 to 794 CE a number of debates were held in the Bsam yas monastery between Chinese and Indian Buddhists. The debate was decided in favour of the Indians: Buddhists translations from Chinese sources were abandoned and the Indian Buddhist influence became predominant.
In its most basic form, Buddhism does not include the concept of a god. The existence of god is neither confirmed, nor denied; it is a non-theistic system. The Buddha is seen as an extraordinary man, not a deity. Some Buddhist schools have incorporated supernatural entities into their traditions, but even in these cases, the role of human choice and responsibility remains supreme, far above the deeds of the supernatural.
In some Chinese and Japanese Buddhist monasteries, they go even further by performing a curious exercise: The monks are requested to think that the Buddha did not even existed. There is a good reason for this: the core of Buddhism is not the Buddha, but his teachings or dharma. It is said that those who wish to understand Buddhism and are interested in the Buddha are as mistaken as a person who wishes to study mathematics by studying the life of Pythagoras or Newton. By imagining the Buddha never existed, they avoid focusing on the idol so that they can embrace the ideal.