Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Nepal & Buddhism
Nepal - Ancient Buddhist Land
Nepal is an independent kingdom that lies 500 miles along the Himalayas. It is surrounded by Tibet and India. Nepal is divided into three sections: the northern snow mountains, the middle hilly region, and the southern terai. Nepal has almost 20 million people and a variety of ethnic groups. Most people speak Nepali and some speak English. Indo-Aryan immigrants originally settled Nepal in the 7th century B.C. Many tribes succeeded one another, until the Malla period, when three kingdoms were created: Kathmandu, Patan, and Bhaktapar. Recently a system of parliamentary democracy was established.
Buddhism in Nepal
Buddhism in Nepal dates from the birth of Siddharta Gautama himself. Legend has it that many bodhisattvas and previous Lord Buddhas also visited the land. Monuments to these Lord Buddhas can still be seen. &Stone inscriptions and colophons provide clear evidence that a strong lineage of MahasanghikaBhiksunis existed in the seventh century. The country became a repository of Buddhist Sanskrit literature and famous for its production of fine Buddhist art.
Many famous temples have been erected throughout Nepal. Although many ancient temples were destroyed by earthquakes in 1355 and 1934, many important religious structures still survive. The ancient stupas of Swayambhu and Bodhnath are regarded as most sacred.
Buddhism in Nepal includes Theravada, Mahayana and Vajrayana traditions. The rulers of Nepal have primarily been Hindu, but have supported the development of Buddhism over the centuries. The Tibetan Mahayana tradition is the most popular in northern Nepal, with approximately 3000 monasteries. NewarVajrayana Buddhism is a widespread religious system in the Kathmandu Valley with an elaborate tradition of ritual. Since the early 40s some Nepalese have turned to Theravada practice based on the Pali canon, stressing the rational aspects of Buddhism over ritual. Most Theravada monasteries are located in the Kathmandu Valley. There are approximately 100 monks and 150 nuns, mostly belonging to the Newar community. Newars with the Shakya surname trace their lineage to the family of Shakyamuni Buddha.
We Wish Blessings of Triple Gems & Quick Recovery for Nepal ………