David Eckel: Buddhism 17-18 of 24

David Eckel Buddhism

The seventeenth and eighteenth lectures by Prof David Eckel on Buddhism look at the various schools of the Tibetan tradition, and then focus on the institution of the Dalai Lama specifically.

Course Notes:

David Eckel on Buddhism 17

Buddhism was eclipsed in Tibet during much of the tenth century and eventually had to be reintroduced from India.

This process of reintroduction is known as the “Later Diffusion of the Dharma.” Between the twelfth and fourteenth centuries, the Tibetan tradition crystallized into four major schools.

The Nyingma, or “Old,” School traced its origin to Padmasambhava. The Sakya School played an important role in Tibetan relations with the Mongols and in the formation of a Tibetan monastic state.

The Kagyu School produced Milarepa, one of Tibet’s most beloved saints. And the Geluk School produced the lineage of the Dalai Lamas, a lineage that has come to dominate the religious life of Tibet.

 

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Course Notes:

David Eckel on Buddhism 18

When the Dalai Lama received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1989 for his peaceful resistance to Chinese domination in Tibet, he became one of the foremost spokesmen and most visible symbols of Buddhism in the contemporary world. He is the fourteenth in a line of incarnations that began in the fifteenth century.

Born in Tibet and educated as the traditional “god-king” who ruled Tibet from his throne in Lhasa, the Dalai Lama has helped lead Tibetan Buddhists through a period of deep political and cultural adversity.

His life and teaching are clear models for thoughtful Buddhists who are attempting to adapt Buddhist traditions to the challenges of modern life.

 

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