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Forum LockedMahayana and Theravada Buddhism in Indochina

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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sarmat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Mahayana and Theravada Buddhism in Indochina
    Posted: 17-Apr-2009 at 18:02
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Indochina has become a place of interactions between Theravada Buddhism (traditional school for the region) and Mahayna represented mainly by Chinese immigrants.

I read that a number of Chinese Buddhists have conterted to Theravada in Malaysia. Does anybody has knowledge of the similar instances in Thailand?

Are instances of converting of Theravadans to Mahayana? Were there any attempts of creating a sencretic Buddhist moderninst movement based on the both schools?

My guess is that the latter would be more possible in Malaysia than in Thailand.

Please join the discussion !



Edited by Seko - 14-Jan-2010 at 20:16
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Zomaan Shilogh Dyak View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Zomaan Shilogh Dyak Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Apr-2009 at 18:10
Their has been a level of syncretism between Mahayana (including Vajrayana) and Thervada Buddhism in Thailand for quite some time.
 
An example of that would be that Thai Buddhists revere the Boddhisattvas, a concept that does not exist in mainstream Theravada Buddhism. The Boddhisattva Avalokiteshvara is particularly popular. This has most probably been introduced by Chinese merchants, but ancient Vajrayana practices are also present.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sarmat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Apr-2009 at 18:24
Very interesting. Can one then say that recently a unique branch of Buddhism has been developing in Thailand?
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Zomaan Shilogh Dyak View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Zomaan Shilogh Dyak Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Apr-2009 at 18:28
I would'nt say recently, this syncertism has been present for a few centuries.
 
I dont think this will lead to a new sect, but it does show that strict Theravada Buddhists are open to Mahayana ideas.
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Post Options Post Options   Quote Sarmat Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Apr-2009 at 18:56
Yes. This conclusion makes sense.
How about Chinese Mahayana in Indochina then? Did it get some influxes of Theravada?
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Post Options Post Options   Quote lirelou Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15-Jun-2009 at 17:05
There is a study by the French School for Far Eastern studies (E.F.E.O.) which made a comparison of Buddhist practices from North through South Vietnam, but I cannot presently pull up the persee site to search it. The link was: http://www.persee.fr/web/revues/home/prescript/revue/befeo

Anyway, from what I remember, it traced syncretism down through the three Vietnams citing examples.

Li Tana, in "Nguyen Cochinchina", characterizes Central and South Vietnam as being Buddhist, versus the North being Confucian prior to Gia Long's reunification and ascent to the Nguyen throne. Gerald C. Hickey characterizes the 1960s and 70s South Vietnamese as being Taoists at their core. My own experience in Vietnam tends me to Hickey's view, at least as regards the older generation. The majority of younger in-law males tend to view religion as superstition, but the girls and women still pray to the ancestral spirits, the Buddhas, and the Goddess of Mercy.


Edited by lirelou - 15-Jun-2009 at 23:28
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