Born in India in the sixth century B.C., it became the religion of Ceylon, Siam, Burma and Cambodia, which adhere to the older or Southern School, while the developed Mahayana School is found in various forms in Tibet, Mongolia, China, Korea, and Japan. Buddhism includes the most exalted philosophy yet achieved by man, a psychology from which the West is slowly beginning to learn, a religion which has satisfied millions for 2,500 years, a Middle Way of self-development to self-enlightenment and a range and depth of spiritual science, mysticism and religious art which cannot be found elsewhere.An acknowledged expert during his lifetime, Christmas Humphreys outlines and introduces the many strands of this religion-philosophy in his fascinating and now famous book.
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By now the Bodhisattva ideal had almost replaced the earlier Arhat ideal of the
Theravada. The word Bodhisattva means one whose essence or being (sattva) is
perfect Wisdom (Bodhi), but historically it meant one who has dedicated his life to
Nirvana The Goal of Buddhism is the condition of the Arhat, and the Arhat is one
who has reached Nirvana (Pali: Nibbana). 'To have realized the Truths, and
traversed the Path; to have broken the Bonds, put an end to the Intoxications, got
In the Mahayana School, the conception rose in importance until it ousted that of
the Arhat as the human ideal, and the change was perhaps inevitable. From the
viewpoint of the human heart the Arhat is cold, and wears the blinkers of a man ...
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - Marse - LibraryThing
This little book gives an overview of Buddhism from its beginning until the late 1940s when the book was written. Buddhism is much more complex and varied than I had expected and this book is a good ... Read full review