Buddhism in Five Minutes - Elizabeth J. Harris

Buddhism in Five Minutes - Elizabeth J. Harris

9. What do we Know about the Historical Buddha?

Buddhism in Five Minutes - Elizabeth J. Harris

Dhivan Thomas Jones [+-]
University of Chester
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Dhivan Thomas Jones is a Lecturer in Philosophy and Religious Studies at the University of Chester. His research is mainly in the area of early Buddhist philosophy.

Description

The question is more difficult than it appears, and I propose to answer it by analyzing three of its component terms—know, historical, and buddha—before attempting an answer to the what. It would seem that traditional Buddhists of Asian lands were not concerned with this kind of question. For them, as indeed for many modern Western Buddhists, the term “buddha” did not primarily refer to a particular historical personage but rather to the discoverer of the way to awakening, the founder and teacher of what has become known as Buddhism, a guide and exemplar, the first of the Three Jewels or precious things (the Triple Gem), to which Buddhists go for refuge. In short, for Buddhists, the Buddha is an object of faith and devotion.

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Citation

Jones, Dhivan Thomas. 9. What do we Know about the Historical Buddha?. Buddhism in Five Minutes. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 46-49 Nov 2021. ISBN 9781800500907. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=40746. Date accessed: 23 Oct 2021 doi: 10.1558/equinox.40746. Nov 2021

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