Among the many distinctions that exist, a few could be considered especially integral to an understanding of how these mutually exclusive divisions contrast with each other.
The way of the Mahayana, in contrast to the more conservative and austere Theravada school of Buddhism, can be characterized by: Universalism, Everyone will become a Buddha.
Enlightened wisdom, as the main focus of realization. Compassion through the transferal of merit.
Salvation- as opposed to Liberation- supported by a rich cosmography, including celestial realms and powers, with a spectrum of Bodhisattvasboth human and seemingly godlike, who can assist followers. This is based on a subtle doctrinal distinction between the Mahayana and Nikaya traditions concerning the issues of Nirvana-with-remainder and Nirvana-without-remainder.
This distinction is most evident regarding doctrinal concerns about the capability of a Buddha after mahaparinirvana which is identified by the Nikaya as being nirvana-without-remainder.
Most importantly, within the Nikaya, a Samyaksambuddha is not able to directly point the way to nirvana after death. This is a major distinction between Nikaya and the Mahayana, who conversely state that once a SamyaksamBuddha arises, he or she continues to directly and actively point the way to nirvana until there are no beings left in samsara.
Because the views of Nikaya and Mahayana differ in this respect, this is exactly why the Mahayana do not talk about a bodhisattva postponing nirvana, and exactly why the Nikaya do.
For example, within Nikaya traditions, Maitreya has chosen to postpone his Nirvana in order to introduce the Dharma when it no longer exists. While within Mahayana schools, Maitreya will also be the next Buddha manifest in this world and introduce the Dharma when it no longer exists; however he is not postponing his Nirvana to do so, and when he dies or enters mahaparinirvanahe will likewise continue to teach the Dharma for all time.
Moreover, Mahayana argues that although it is true that for this world-system Maitreya is the next Buddha to manifest, there are an infinite number of world-systems many of which have currently active Buddhas or Buddhas-to-be manifesting.
Because the Mahayana traditions assert that eventually everyone will achieve Samyaksambuddhahood or total enlightenment, the Mahayana is labelled universalist, whereas because the Nikaya traditions assert that there are three routes to Nirvana, which are distinct, they are considered not to be universalist.
Enlightened wisdom Edit According to Mahayana, traditional Buddhism tends to focus on an ascetic, individual, approach to attain Nirvana: In contrast, the primary focus of Mahayana is bodhicitta: With this mind the practitioner will realize the final goal of full enlightenment, or Buddhahood: Six virtues or perfections paramitas are listed for the Bodhisattva: Compassion Edit Compassion, or Karunais the other key concept of Mahayana, and considered the indispensable complement to enlightened wisdom.
Compassion is important in all schools of Buddhism, but particularly emphasized in Mahayana. It relies on the idea that excess acquired merit can be transmitted to others.
The Bodhisattvas are the main actors of compassion, Avalokitesvara being foremost among them.Mahayana vs.
Theravada: a Multiform Comparison - Mahayana vs. Theravada: The Sects of the Buddhists - The Sects of the Buddhists. Sects & Sectarianism - The origins of Buddhist Schools - sectsandsectarianism - Sects & Sectarianism BETA: Related topics Up to date as of August 19, Theravada And Mahayana Buddhism Essays - There are many interpretations of core teachings in most major religions.
In Christianity, there was a major split over such teachings which resulted in Catholicism and Protestantism, and then within the Protestant church again which resulted in many differing views on foundational teachings.
The two major schools of Buddhism, Theravada and the Mahayana, are to be understood as different expressions of the same teaching of the historical Buddha. Because, in fact, they agree upon and practice the core teachings of the Buddha’s Dharma. Mahayana vs. Theravada: a Multiform Comparison Essay The three major divisions are Theravada, Mahayana, and Vajrayana.
Theravada is the Teaching of the Elders, or the Ancient Teaching.
Theravada Buddhists strive to become arhats, or perfected saints who have attained enlightenment and nirvana. This is considered to only be possible for.
Theravada and Mahayana Buddhism are very different but also have several similarities. Theravada is known as the “School of the Elders”, while Mahayana is known as “The Great Vehicle”.
Theravada follows the seven steps of purification, based on the eightfold path and emphasizes insight. Mahayana Vs. Theravada: A Multiform Comparison Essay - Significant differences abound between the two principal schools of modern Buddhism, Mahayana and Theravada.