The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

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Shaku Kenshin
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The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Shaku Kenshin » Sun Mar 15, 2020 3:42 pm

How would you describe the essence of your or other Buddhist schools in one sentence?
I tried to do this for some of the major schools of Japanese Buddhism below and would be interested in hearing from you which sentences you would choose for these and other schools.

I think it is important to mention that I haven't practiced in most of these schools, so it is just an outsiders perspective and of course it is impossible to capture the depth of the various schools in just a few words, so please don't take this too seriously as this is just for fun.
I look forward to reading the opinions of those who actually practice these and other Buddhist schools.

Shingon-shu: Become a Buddha in this very body

Tendai-shu: Everything is empty, provisionally existend and the Middle at the same time

Rinzai-shu: See the reality of your own mind

Soto-shu: Drop off body and mind

Jodo-shu: Just say the nenbutsu and attain birth in the Pure Land

Jodo Shinshu: Entrust everything to Amida Buddha's Other Power

Nichiren-shu: The daimoku contains all of Shakyamuni's perfect enlightenment
Last edited by Shaku Kenshin on Sun Mar 15, 2020 3:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Meido
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Meido » Sun Mar 15, 2020 3:51 pm

For Rinzai-shu better to use the words that Zen itself uses to sum up the the actual path: kensho jobutsu (see your nature, become Buddha). But sokushin jobutsu (what you wrote for Shingon) works too.

Or, just list the four vows.
It is relatively easy to accomplish the important matter of insight into one’s true nature, but uncommonly difficult to function freely and clearly [according to this understanding], in motion and in rest, in good and in adverse circumstances. Please make strenuous and vigorous efforts towards this end, otherwise all the teachings of Buddhas and patriarchs become mere empty words. - Torei

The Rinzai Zen Way: A Guide to Practice

Hidden Zen: Practices for Sudden Awakening and Embodied Realization

Korinji Rinzai Zen Monastery [臨済宗 • 祖的山光林禅寺] - http://www.korinji.org

Shaku Kenshin
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Shaku Kenshin » Sun Mar 15, 2020 4:23 pm

Hello Meido, yes this is the phrase I had in mind, but couldn't remember the exact words. Thank you very much for your help. :)

What I really like about this little endeavour is that you can see how the emphasises of the various schools are different, but none of these sentences contradict each other, so you can see that they are all aspects of the same truth.

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LastLegend
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by LastLegend » Sun Mar 15, 2020 4:57 pm

Shaku Kenshin wrote:
Sun Mar 15, 2020 3:42 pm

Tendai-shu: Everything is empty, provisionally existend and the Middle at the same time
It’s not that there is a different unborn wisdom to see from this very mind. ‘Everything is empty’ but this is a clean statement of true individual attestation of Mahaprajnaparamita (no self no dharma) which is the most difficult because the very trap of ignorance can be very subtle.
Make personal vows.

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seeker242
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by seeker242 » Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:31 pm

Seon: Who are you? What is this?

:smile:
One should not kill any living being, nor cause it to be killed, nor should one incite any other to kill. Do never injure any being, whether strong or weak, in this entire universe!

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Queequeg
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Queequeg » Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:11 pm

I think all of the schools teach the same "essence": that we must see reality. They differ in method.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

There are beings with little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma. There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.
-Ayacana Sutta

Malcolm
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Malcolm » Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:22 pm

seeker242 wrote:
Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:31 pm
Seon: Who are you? What is this?

:smile:
Hasn't this man ever seen an orange before?

Simon E.
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Simon E. » Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:27 pm

“Reality is like orderly chaos, chaos because there is no plan, orderly because everything is interrelated.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche on the Vajrayana.
“You don’t know it. You just know about it. That is not the same thing.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche to me.

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Queequeg
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Queequeg » Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:32 pm

Simon E. wrote:
Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:27 pm
“Reality is like orderly chaos, chaos because there is no plan, orderly because everything is interrelated.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche on the Vajrayana.
good one.
Those who, even with distracted minds,
Entered a stupa compound
And chanted but once, “Namo Buddhaya!”
Have certainly attained the path of the buddhas.

-Lotus Sutra, Expedient Means Chapter

There are beings with little dust in their eyes who are falling away because they do not hear the Dhamma. There will be those who will understand the Dhamma.
-Ayacana Sutta

mandog
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by mandog » Wed Mar 18, 2020 8:47 am

Malcolm wrote:
Mon Mar 16, 2020 3:22 pm
seeker242 wrote:
Mon Mar 16, 2020 1:31 pm
Seon: Who are you? What is this?

:smile:
Hasn't this man ever seen an orange before?
When I first read this story, I was left wondering if Kalu Rinpoche had actually seen an orange prior to leaving Tibet.

Simon E.
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Joined: Tue May 15, 2012 11:09 am

Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by Simon E. » Wed Mar 18, 2020 4:18 pm

Not the meaning of course. Just a mismatch between the way that Dharma is packaged in different cultures.
Seon appeared to think that the question was self explanatory, but outside of a particular subculture it wasn’t.
“You don’t know it. You just know about it. That is not the same thing.”

Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche to me.

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JoaoRodrigues
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Re: The essence of the Buddhist schools in one sentence

Post by JoaoRodrigues » Fri May 15, 2020 1:51 pm

beginning,
eyes open,
looking,
seeing,
curiosity,
doubt,
meaning,
labeling,
certainty,
judgments,
question,
teachings,
knowledge,
forget,
beginning,

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