By Akira Hirakawa
The current quantity is a translation of the 1st of Hirakawa's two-volume background. It
covers the interval from Sakyamuni* Buddha to Early Mahayana* prior to Nagarjuna*
and contains the sessions on which Hirakawa did so much of his personal prior study. From
1960 to 1968, he released 3 vital stories on Buddhist associations: Ritsuzo* no
kenkyu* (A research of the Vinaya-pitaka*), Genshi Bukkyo* no kenkyu (A research of Early
Buddhism), and Shoki Daijo* Bukkyo no kenkyu (Studies in Early Mahayana Buddhism).
These stories, all popping out of his curiosity within the vinaya, validated his mastery of
Indian Buddhist institutional heritage. This learn used to be really very important in his
formulation of a brand new concept of the increase of Mahayana *. through concentrating on the necessity to identify
an institutional base from which Mahayana arose, Hirakawa argued that stupa* worship
and the formula of Mahayana units of precepts supplied very important facts for the
development of Mahayana Buddhism.
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Additional resources for A History of Indian Buddhism, From Śākyamuni to Early Mahāyāna
W h e n he coutd not He shaken o r m oved from th at ir u lh by fear, p ain , o r passions, he h a d realized e n lig h te n m en t. Because the m in d h a d been freed from th e fetters o f the defile m en ts a n d passions, this stale was called “ e m a n c ip a tio n " o r “ salv a tio n ” (rnoiaa, vimokfa, vimukti). I? T h e F irst Se rm o n A lter the B u d d h a h:id a tta in e d e n lig h te n m e n t, he rem ain ed u n d e r the kodhl-tree a n d e n te re d a d e e p state o f m ed it alive Concentration (samddhi) that lasted for seven days.
K a k u d a 's theo ry o f rhe elem ents was a f o re r u n n e r o f Vaise^ika theories. T h e fifth heterodox teach er, S an jay in V a ira ttip u tra , was a skeptic. H e refused 10 give definite answ ers to q u estio ns, relying instead on ev a sive statem en ts. T h e skeptics' position was a p p a re n tly based on serious d o u b ts ab ou t the n a tu r e o f know ledge a n d on th eir investigations of logic. T w o o f the B u d d h a ’s m ost im p o rta n t disciples* S a r ip u lr a an d M a h a m a u d g a lv a y a n a * c a m e from this school.
A cco rd in g io iraditional sources, K in g B im bU ara saw S a k y a m u n i b eg ging one d a y a n d d ecid ed Lo invite him to b e c o m e a m inister in the gov* e m in e n t, d isp atch e d a r e ia in rr lo p e rsu a d e S ak y am u n i lo a b a n d o n his religious quest, hut S a k y a m u n i refused. S a k y a m u n i eventually b egan practicing religious au sterities u n d e r the g u id a n c e o f o n e o f rhe m ost fam ous religious lead ers o f thai tim e, A raila K a la m a (P.
A History of Indian Buddhism, From Śākyamuni to Early Mahāyāna by Akira Hirakawa