To an outsider they can seem mystical or even odd, but these are the paths to enlightenment and spiritual salvation. Throughout the centuries, Buddhism has evolved into a major religion in Asia and other parts of the world. The mystical roots of Buddhism can be traced back to the first century BCE. Buddhism began with the birth of Siddhartha Gautama. When Siddhartha was born he was noticed as having “the 32 auspicious signs of an enlightened one” (Clark and Brown 3).
Quickly many Chinese began to convert to the new religion that was brought into china. In fact, Buddhism would become a central aspect to culture of the Chinese. Buddhism had a great impact on the Chinese, philosophers, and Chinese emperors. Additionally, Buddhism had a great influence on Chinese art, and Buddhism was the greatest foreign influence on the artwork of the Chinese. Chinese artist would mix their traditions, with other popular Buddhist art forms from places, such as India.
Hinduism spread throughout the subcontinent of India from its origin in the Indus Valley. Buddhism emerged near Buddha’s home near the Himalayas to the rest of India and Southeast Asia. Siddhartha Gautama, who became Buddha, came from a Hindu family. The presence of Hinduism also greatly influenced Buddhist beliefs and practices. For, example Buddhists and Hindus believe in reincarnation and the idea of enlightenment.
Buddhism spread in Southeast Asia where else Christianity spread in the Western Europe. They both however shared a place in which many of their ideas came from, India, which was the key to syncretism as India incorporated its tradition and values in these religions. Both religions functioned as a result of political rulers using the religion to strengthen their power, but also as a result these religions came to spread. King Ashoka used Buddhism for power, which brought Buddhism to spread and likewise, the church used Christianity to strengthen themselves as well a promote the religion. As the first millennium came to an end, Buddhism and Christianity established themselves as universal religions due to the fact of syncretism and the activities of political rulers and representatives of the religion.
The most fascinating aspect in Korean history prior to the 1500’s is the introduction and influence of Buddhism. Although Buddhism was introduced into the Korean society in early years, it was not accepted until many years later. After acceptance, Korean Buddhism began to grow, develop and spread throughout the country. With Buddhism, came many distinctive aspects. These very distinctive Buddhist characteristics have influenced Korean culture throughout the different time periods in many ways such as art, architecture, spiritual civilization, and Korean society as a whole.
Emperor Asoka/Ashoka (c. 304 – 232 BCE) is known as one of the most important figures in the history of Buddhism. During his reign, Buddhism “spread more widely, reaching most of the Indian sub-continent, and also beyond, thus becoming a ‘world religion’" (Harvey, 75). Without Asoka’s influence, Buddhism would not have traveled that far from its origin and may not be still in existence today. Conversely, Buddhism also played an important role in Asoka’s success. Buddhism helped Emperor Asoka to overcome the guilt of his past transgressions, consolidate his power in his empire, and preserved his legacy.
One branch of Buddhism is Mahayana, which literally means the Great Vehicle. Mahayana can more easily be defined as a loose collection of teachings with large and extensive principles that coexist all together. Mahayana defines itself as penetrating further and more deeply into the Buddha's Dharma, or the way of the Buddha. This practice originates in India, and slowly spread across Asia to countries as China, Japan, Korea through the missionary activities of monks and the support of kings. However, the roots of this religion are still not completely known.
In fact that Thailand has become a widely known today as a ‘Land of Smile’ due to the greatest cultural achievements of Thai society that was associated with religious beliefs; they all have been there for more than hundreds of years. One of the largest religious in Thailand is Buddhism. Buddhism is a system of beliefs and practices centered on the freedom from suffering and continuing rebirths by using the Buddha first teaching knowledge. This teaching is about the right practice lead to liberation, this path is known as ‘Middle way’. Furthermore, there are three different major forms of Buddhism include Theravada, Mahayana, and Tantrayana (Punyasingh, p.7).
Followers of Buddhism worshipped Buddh... ... middle of paper ... ...ials, but one could argue the fact that religion was the single most important influence on Korean and Japanese civilizations because most systems of government used religion to legitimize governmental power. Religion brought new forms of poetry and literature as well as new styles of architecture. Many Korean and Japanese monks traveled to China in search of new texts to translate. Agricultural developments improved the economic stability of the countries by providing improved irrigation systems and easier methods of food gathering. The major impacts of Chinese influence on legislation, agriculture, art, literature, and religion were crucial in the nationwide development of Japan through the Heian period and Korea through the period of unification under Silla and helped the countries learn and advance in technology on their own to advance their civilizations.
in Nepal. The spread of Buddhism took many centuries, and didn't reach Japan until 6th century A.C. (Buddhanet). Although there are many sects of Buddhism, the... ... middle of paper ... ...ism and "new religions" seem different in many aspects, there are common themes and theories among them. This being said, it is also observed that many different religions around the world share a number of commonalities. Shinto and Buddhism define a lot of cultural morals and values that the Japanese use in conduct everyday.