By Donald K. Swearer

ISBN-10: 1438432518

ISBN-13: 9781438432519

A wide-ranging, readable account of the Theravada Buddhist inspiration and perform within the Southeast Asian societies of Thailand, Myanmar (Burma), Laos, Cambodia, and Sri Lanka.

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Extra resources for The Buddhist World of Southeast Asia (S U N Y Series in Religious Studies)

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The Buddha predicts the coming of the future Buddha, Metteyya, and tells Ananda that the monk with the lowest seniority will be reborn as Metteyya 21. The Buddha visits his ill father who becomes an arahant before his death; an order of nuns is established on Ananda’s request but with a lower status than the bhikkhu sangha the popular tradition: inclusive syncretism 47 22. The Buddha performs several miracles, but forbids his disciples to do so without first seeking his permission 23. The Buddha travels to Tavatimsa Heaven and preaches the Abhidhamma to his mother 24.

Knowledge of the consecration ritual gives us insight into the contextual meaning of a Buddha image and, hence, enriches our understanding that virtually all Theravada Buddhist rituals conducted in front of the image, such as the kathina ceremony, are mechanisms of reciprocity and appropriation of power. We now have a much better comprehension of the richly textured, multivalent nature of Theravada Buddhist ritual. The kathina ceremony can be understood in a literal sense as an annual renewal and replenishment of monks’ robes and other material requisites for the monastic order.

Dozens of women were paid to card, spin, weave, and sew in temporary quarters especially built for the occasion. In this particular instance, the sponsor was a wealthy businesswoman from Chiang Mai, the largest city in northern Thailand. 10. Rains retreat (kathina) procession. Keng Tung, Shan State, Myanmar. The actual presentation of robes, money, and other offerings for the livelihood of the monks is the highlight of the kathina. It frequently involves a procession that varies in size and constituency according to the nature of the community.

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The Buddhist World of Southeast Asia (S U N Y Series in Religious Studies) by Donald K. Swearer


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