By K. R. Norman
This quantity comprises a little bit revised models of the lectures given by means of Professor Norman as Bukkyo Dendo Kyokai vacationing Professor on the university of Oriental and African stories from January to March 1994. The lectures are designed for readers with little
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Additional info for A philological approach to Buddhism : the Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai lectures 1994
E. 7 The tradition, it is suggested, must therefore be a late story from South India. It is, however, quite arguable and, I think, more likely that it represents the actual clan relationships at that time among non-Indo-Aryan tribes in the North, or among tribes which had until recently been non-Indo-Aryan. What do we know about the religious beliefs of the Buddha’s contemporaries, those beliefs which he found around him? When we come to examine the teaching of the Buddha we find that we can make certain deductions about those beliefs from his reactions to them.
My own feeling is that it is very likely that “the truth of the noble one (the Buddha)” is the correct translation, although we must never lose sight of the fact that in Indian literature multiple meanings are very often intended, so that it is not always possible to say that there is a single correct meaning. To give another example: we all know at least the title of the text called , and following Burnouf we have always translated this as “the lotus of the good law”. Once again this is not the only possibility.
With those other movements he shared technical terms and epithets to describe those who had escaped from , as well as anti-brahmanical literature. Looked at in this way we can see that, although the Buddha’s experience and his way of making known his experience to others were unique, there is far more that Buddhism held in common with the movements which were contemporary with it than we would normally assume, and we can see that there is an element of truth in the well known statement that the only original feature of the Buddha’s teaching was his combination of a belief in the transmigration of the self with the denial that there was a self to transmigrate.
A philological approach to Buddhism : the Bukkyō Dendō Kyōkai lectures 1994 by K. R. Norman
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