This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

NOTICE:
This Dark Age is now available in paperback on Amazon. The print version is MUCH cleaner than this online version, which is largely unedited and has fallen by the wayside as the project has grown. If you’ve appreciated my writing, please consider leaving a review on the relevant paperback volumes. The print edition also includes new sections (Military History, War Psychology, Dogmatic Theology).

Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3| Volume 4 | Volume 5 | Volume 6

Branch within branch

If we can speak historically of two broad divisions within Buddhism, the Hinayana and the Mahayana, we see that within these division there are sub-divisions or ‘denominations’ that call for additional comment since what we have said above regarding Hinayana and Mahayana do not adequately encompass the unique character of specific adaptations. We will therefore add some additional explanation here dedicated to those schools and their distinctive characteristics.

As for Hinayana, we could say that although there were various ‘Hinayana schools’, there is now only the Theravada school, and while it is accurate to place Theravada within the broad category of Hinayana, the two are not synonymous, and Theravada has nuances that other Hinayana schools may or may not have displayed.

If Theravada is the predominant Hinayana school, the case is more complex with the Mahayana, which stands to reason considering its much wider scope for adaptation and the fact that it addresses itself to humanity at large. Within the Mahayana we find the well-known school of Zen (in Japan) or Ch’an (in China); we find Pure Land Buddhism, also called Amidism; and also that unique and powerful adaptation that is Tibetan Buddhism. Because these are the largest representative groups, we will comment on each and pass over other minor schools.

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