Buddha e o Culto da Não-Violência
No capítulo três do primeiro canto da escritura védica conhecida como Srimad-Bhagavatam, ou Bhagavata Purana (verso 24), encontramos a predição de várias encarnações (avataras) do Senhor Krishna. Entre elas, está o Senhor Buddha, que veio à Terra há cerca de mil e seiscentos anos. Além do aparecimento dos avataras, há muitas outras profecias, que estão sendo cumpridas uma após a outra, o que deixa claro a posição sublime das escrituras védicas, as quais são isentas dos quatro defeitos das almas corporificadas: propensão a erro, ilusão, engano e imperfeição sensorial.
Sobre o Senhor Buddha, o Srimad-Bhagavatam menciona que, no início da era de Kali, o mesmo Krishna apareceria na província de Gaya como Anjana-suta, o filho de Anjana. Nessa forma, conhecida como Buddha, essa poderosa encarnação da Personalidade de Deus atuaria de modo a enganar (sammohaya) aqueles que são antagônicos aos teístas fiéis (sura-dvisham).
É importante ressaltarmos que existem diferentes categorias de avataras, sendo que todos e cada um deles aparecem na Terra para cumprir funções particulares. Existem os purushavataras, responsáveis pela origem do universo; os gunavataras, responsáveis pelos gunas, ou modos da natureza (ignorância, paixão e bondade); os lilavataras, responsáveis pela execução de maravilhosas lilas, ou passatempos, que atraem as almas condicionadas; e, entre outros, existem os avataras da classe shakty-avesha, categoria à qual o Senhor Buddha pertence. Shakty-avesha é um termo usado para definir um ser vivo que é especificamente dotado de poder pelo Supremo para agir em Seu nome, ou uma manifestação do próprio Senhor que vem cumprir um propósito em particular. No caso de Buddha, Ele foi enfático em censurar os sacrifícios de animais sancionados nos Vedas. Isso ocorreu porque, na ocasião do Seu aparecimento, as pessoas em geral eram ateístas e, usando algumas seções dos Vedas como apoio, interpretavam a matança excessiva de animais como sacrifícios védicos. Srila Prabhupada esclarece isso da seguinte maneira:
“A matança de animais, antes do advento do Senhor Buddha, era o mais proeminente aspecto da sociedade. As pessoas proclamavam que esses sacrifícios eram védicos. Quando os Vedas não são aceitos através da sucessão discipular autorizada, os leitores casuais dos Vedas são desencaminhados pela linguagem florida desse sistema de conhecimento. No Bhagavad-gita, faz-se um comentário sobre tais acadêmicos tolos (avipaschitah). Os acadêmicos tolos da literatura védica, que não se importam de receber a mensagem transcendental através de fontes transcendentais autorrealizadas, em sucessão discipular, certamente serão confundidos. Para eles, as cerimônias ritualísticas são consideradas como o máximo de tudo. Eles não têm profundidade de conhecimento. Segundo o Bhagavad-gita (15.15), vedais cha sarvair aham eva vedyah: todo o sistema dos Vedas é para levar-nos gradualmente ao caminho do Senhor Supremo. Todo o tema da literatura védica destina-se ao conhecimento do Senhor Supremo, da alma individual, da situação cósmica e da relação entre todos esses itens. Quando a relação é conhecida, a função relativa se inicia. Como resultado de tal função, a meta última da vida, ou seja, voltar ao Supremo, ocorre da maneira mais fácil. Desafortunadamente, acadêmicos desautorizados dos Vedas cativam-se apenas pelas cerimônias purificatórias, o que faz com que o progresso natural seja obstruído”.
Desse modo, sensibilizado com a condição dos animais, o compassivo Buddha pregou a filosofia ahimsa da não-violência, e enfatizou os efeitos psicológicos adversos provocados pela matança de animais. Como, na época, Se dirigia aos homens menos inteligentes da era de Kali, os quais eram completamente carentes de consciência de Deus, Buddha teve que declarar que não acreditava nos dogmas dos Vedas. Agindo assim, Ele conseguiu atrair os ateístas e, oportunamente, os treinou na disciplina moral e, injetando-lhes compaixão no coração, fez com que dessem seus primeiros passos no caminho da realização espiritual. Através dessa estratégia de iludir os ateístas, Ele indiretamente fez com que eles seguissem os princípios espirituais apresentados por Ele. Em outras palavras, mesmo que não declarassem acreditar em Deus, eles desenvolveram absoluta fé no Senhor Buddha, o qual era a própria encarnação de Deus. Portanto, Sua misericórdia transformou os infiéis em plenamente fiéis a Ele – o que significa dizer que os infiéis foram levados a acreditar em Deus sob a forma do Senhor Buddha.
Dentro de Sua missão espiritual, Buddha quis primeiramente sustar o hábito da matança de animais, uma vez que, no caminho de volta ao Supremo, não há espaço para os matadores de animais, os quais incluem o “matador da alma”, que também é chamada de “animal”.
Segundo Maharaja Parikshit, um dos personagens centrais dos diálogos do Srimad-Bhagavatam, uma pessoa envolvida com a matança de animais não pode saborear a mensagem transcendental do Senhor. Portanto, aqueles que desejam seriamente ser educados no caminho espiritual terão, antes de qualquer outra coisa, que se livrar do envolvimento direto e indireto com qualquer tipo de matança de animais. Infelizmente, com o avanço da era de Kali, muito líderes religiosos não dão a devida importância a esse tema, os quais inclusive chegam a pregar a matança de animais sob o disfarce da religião. Contudo, o sacrifício animal, como estabelecido em algumas escrituras como os Vedas, são completamente diferentes da matança irrestrita e cruel que acontece nos matadouros. Porque, na época, alguns ditos acadêmicos védicos apontavam a evidência da matança de animais nos Vedas, o Senhor Buddha teve, como dito, que negar superficialmente a autoridade dos Vedas. Mas é bom que se saiba que esta rejeição por parte do Senhor Buddha foi adotada tanto para salvar as pessoas do vício da matança de animais quanto para salvar os pobres animais do processo de matança executado por seus irmãos maiores, que, hipocritamente, clamam por fraternidade universal, paz, justiça e equidade.
Uma Filosofia Ateísta?
Mas por que a filosofia do Senhor Buddha é chamada de ateísta? Tecnicamente, por dois motivos: primeiramente porque não há aceitação do Senhor Supremo, e depois porque Seu sistema de filosofia nega a autoridade dos Vedas. Todavia, ao estudarmos o Srimad-Bhagavatam, podemos compreender claramente que tudo não passou de um ato de camuflagem executado pelo próprio Senhor. Em outras palavras, como Buddha é a encarnação do Supremo, Ele é certamente o preconizador original do conhecimento védico. Portanto, ele não poderia rejeitar a filosofia védica, embora tenha o feito externamente para impedir que pessoas carentes de sabedoria tentassem usar as páginas dos Vedas para justificar a matança de vacas. O Senhor Buddha fez algo simplesmente técnico; e se não fosse assim, o Bhagavatam não O incluiria na lista dos avataras, assim como Ele não teria sido glorificado como uma compassiva encarnação de Deus pelo grande poeta vaishnava Jayadeva, que é reconhecidamente um acharya. A conclusão é que Buddha pregou os princípios preliminares dos Vedas de maneira apropriada para aquela época, assim como também o fez Shankaracharya ao restabelecer a autoridade dos Vedas. Portanto, tanto o Senhor Buddha quanto o acharya Shankara prepararam o caminho para o teísmo, e os acharyas vaishnavas, especificamente o Senhor Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, indicaram para as pessoas o caminho da realização de volta ao Supremo. Ainda sobre este tema, Srila Prabhupada comenta: “Ficamos contentes de saber que as pessoas estão se interessando no movimento de não-violência do Senhor Buddha. Mas levarão o assunto bastante a sério e fecharão totalmente os matadouros de animais? Caso contrário, o culto de ahimsa perde o sentido”.
Se gostou deste artigo, talvez também goste deste: Advaita Vedanta Revisitado.
Caro Senhor Autor,
Este Buda não é o mesmo Buda Shakyamuni Siddharta Gautama, fundador do Budismo.
Segundo Srila Bhakti Prajnana Keshava, que concedeu a ordem de sanyasa a Srila Prabhupada, o Vishnu Buda Avatara não tem nada a ver com o fundador do budismo histórico. Siddhartha Gautama, que era um príncipe do clã dos Shakyas, alcançou a iluminação na cidade de Bodhigaya, Índia, a cerca de 2.600 anos. Veja o livro Beyond Nirvana, de Srila Narayana Maharaja. Existe muita confusão sobre o budismo, por que é uma tradição muito vasta e que requer estudo da história e das várias escolas budistas.Porém, como as pessoas não tem tempo ou interesse, então é mais fácil pegar um conceito simples de uma religião e fazer desse conceito o entendimento total dessa religião. O budismo não é nem teísta nem ateísta. O conceito de Deus do monoteísmo não existe no budismo. Buda Shakyamuni nem negou nem afirmou sobre esse Deus das religiões teístas. O conceito de absoluto é Dharmakaya.
1 de março de 2013 às 2:19 PM
Prezado Sadom, obrigado por sua mensagem.
O texto de Chandramukha Swami tem por base o comentário do fundador da ISKCON, A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada, ao verso 1.3.24 do Srimad-Bhagavatam, onde o referido comentador diz que a filosofia de Buddha é ateísta e que Buddha nasceu há cerca de mil e seiscentos anos, o que confere com a data de Gautama Buddha e parece indicar seguramente que Prabhupada não distingue entre o Buddha Avatar e o Buddha Gautama. Em pesquisa ao VedaBase, não encontramos nenhuma declaração de Prabhupada sobre a questão levantada pelo senhor.
Contudo, diferentes perspectivas são sempre enriquecedoras, e pedimos que compartilhe à vontade, em postura respeitosa, qualquer outro entendimento que o senhor julgue pertinente, como o entendimento do guru de sannyasa de Prabhupada ou de qualquer outra fonte.
5 de março de 2013 às 3:35 PM
Were There Two Buddhas?
By Stephen Knapp
I was asked to look into this a few years ago by someone who knew of my research abilities. But I have not been able to until now because of other priorities. But this topic has come up before, that actually there were two different Buddhas that played the part to establish Buddhism and its principles of ahimsa and nonviolence and its monist philosophy.
In the following material, we will look at the evidence that seems to indicate that there was first the Avatara Buddha, the incarnation of Lord Vishnu who appeared near 1800 BCE, and then there was another person who became known as Gautama called Buddha, born around 560 BCE.
1. The first Avatara Buddha established the philosophy of Ahimsa, nonviolence, and convinced those followers of Vedic customs who had become bent toward animal sacrifice to give up such rituals and simply follow him, and become kind to animals. Being an avatara of Vishnu, He did not establish any godless or monist philosophy.
2. The Avatara Buddha was also born of his mother Anjana in what became known as Bodhgaya.
3. The second Buddha known as Gautama, Siddhartha, or Shakyamuni – sage of the Shakyas – was born in Lumbini, now in Nepal, with Mayadevi as his mother. He is the one we often hear about, the prince who left home to do austerities to find enlightenment. He went to Bodhgaya to meditate because of its spiritual potency as the birthplace of the avatara Buddha. Then he became enlightened to the reasons for suffering in this world, and developed a godless way of becoming free from suffering. From that point he established the monist and godless philosophy of Buddhism, which became named after him.
Of course, the Theravadin texts refer to six preceding Buddhas (those who have awakened) as Vipasyin, Sikin, Krakuccanda, Konagamara, and Kashyapa, and Maitreya as the Buddha of the future. But we are not talking of any of these.
4. The reason why these two Buddhas became merged into one identity was partly because Adi Sankaracharya, in discussions with others, related them as one person and did not discriminate between the purpose of one or the other. Sankaracharya developed his own sunya philosophy, which was very much like the Buddhist philosophy, replacing the Buddhist nirvana with his Vedic Brahman, to defeat Buddhism and drive it out of India. He succeeded most effectively. At that time many were leaving Vedic culture altogether and converting to Buddhism. But with this new Mayavadha philosophy from Sankaracharya, Buddhism bowed and the conversions stopped, and Buddhism itself started to decline.
However, those important acharyas who followed Sankaracharya defeated his monist or impersonalist Mayavada philosophy and more clearly defined the Vedic view, such as:
Sri Vishnuswami with his Suddha-advaita-vada,
Ramanujacharya with his Vasistadvaita-vada,
Nimbarkacharya with his Dvaita-advaita-vada,
Madhvacharya with the Dvaita-vada,
Sri Chaitanya with his Acintaya-bheda-bheda-vada,
with further commentary and arguments against Sankaracharya’s impersonalist philosophy by Srila Baladevavidyabhushana and others.
Therefore, no matter how much some schools of thought have clung to the Mayavada philosophy of Sankaracharya, it has been defeated and dismissed many times over. Yet, Sankaracharaya played an important part in paving the way for protecting the Vedic culture by using his own imagined philosophy, based on his own interpretation of some of the Vedic stanzas, to defeat Buddhism at the time.
Much of the evidence that follows comes from a book called Beyond Nirvana: The Philosophy of Mayavadism: A Life History. This was written by Srila Bhakti Prajnan Keshava Gosvami Maharaja of the Gaudiya Math, the person who gave sannyasa initiation to His Divine Grace Srila A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami. The book was later translated and published in English by Sri Srimad Bhaktivedanta Narayana Maharaja, and published in 2003 in Mathura, India.
The whole book gives a lengthy dissertation on the development, history and present situation of the impersonalist point of view. Chapter Two especially focuses on the evidence for two Buddhas that had existed.
First, however, we should point out that there had always been a conflict in the dates of the Buddha’s birth. One birth is around 560 BCE, but when analyzing the records, there is evidence for a much earlier birth of Lord Buddha, of which I have written before as follows:
Reestablishing the Date of Lord Buddha
(Excerpt from Proof of Vedic Culture’s Global Existence)
Most of us are taught that Buddha was born around 560 to 550 B.C. However, once we start doing some research, we find evidence that this date may be too late. Buddha may have been born much earlier.
For example, in Some Blunders of Indian Historical Research (p. 189), P. N. Oak explains that the Puranas provide a chronology of the Magadha rulers. During the time of the Mahabharata war, Somadhi (Marjari) was the ruler. He started a dynasty that included 22 kings that spread over 1006 years. They were followed by five rulers of the Pradyota dynasty that lasted over 138 years. Then for the next 360 years was the 10 rulers of the Shishunag family. Kshemajit (who ruled from 1892 to 1852 B.C.) was the fourth in the Shishunag dynasty, and was a contemporary of Lord Buddha’s father, Shuddhodana. It was during this period in which Buddha was born. It was during the reign of Bimbisara, the fifth Shishunag ruler (1852-1814 B.C.), when Prince Siddhartha became the enlightened Buddha. Then it was during the reign of King Ajatashatru (1814-1787 B.C.) when Buddha left this world. Thus, he was born in 1887 B.C., renounced the world in 1858 B.C., and died in 1807 B.C. according to this analysis.
Further evidence that helps corroborate this is provided in The Age of Buddha, Milinda and King Amtiyoka and Yuga Purana, by Pandit Kota Venkatachalam. He also describes that it is from the Puranas, especially the Bhagavata Purana and the Kaliyurajavruttanta, that need to be consulted for the description of the Magadha royal dynasties to determine the date of Lord Buddha. Buddha was the 23rd in the Ikshvaku lineage, and was a contemporary of Kshemajita, Bimbisara, and Ajatashatru, as described above. Buddha was 72 years old in 1814 B.C. when the coronation of Ajatashatru took place. Thus, the date of Buddha’s birth must have been near 1887 B.C., and his death in 1807 B.C. if he lived for 80 years.
Professor K. Srinivasaraghavan also relates in his book, Chronology of Ancient Bharat (Part Four, Chapter Two), that the time of Buddha should be about 1259 years after the Mahabharata war, which should make it around 1880 B.C. if the war was in 3138 B.C. Furthermore, astronomical calculations by astronomer Swami Sakhyananda indicates that the time of the Buddha was in the Kruttika period, between 2621-1661 B.C.
Therefore, the fact that Buddha lived much earlier than what modern history teaches us has a number of ramifications. First, the time of the Buddha’s existence is underestimated by about 1300 years. Secondly, this means that Buddhism was in existence in the second millennium B.C. Thirdly, we also know Buddha preached against the misused Vedic rituals of animal sacrifice. Such misuse or misinterpretation of something in a culture generally only happens after a long period of prominence. So the purer aspect of Vedic culture must have been around for many hundreds if not thousands of years before its tradition began to be misused. Therefore, this pushes the Vedic period to a much earlier time from that of Buddha than originally figured, and much earlier than many people have calculated. And lastly, everything else we have figured according to the time frame of the appearance of Buddha now has to be re-calculated. Again we find that history has to be adjusted away from the speculations of modern researchers, and that many of the advancements in society and philosophy, as outlined in the Vedic texts, had taken place much earlier than many people want to admit.
* * *
However, now with new evidence, we can begin to see that the above information may be quite right for the timing of the Buddha Avatara, but the later birth figure of 560 BCE may also be correct for the second Buddha. The first Buddha avatara established a form of Buddhism by revolting against those rituals that accepted animal sacrifice and emphasized the godly principles of ahimsa, nonviolence based on recognizing the Divine in all beings, and divinity of all souls, arousing compassion for all. The second Buddha styled what became Buddhism that was known for its monist or impersonalistic philosophy (that God, the Absoute Truth, is inert, nonactive, and without any characteristics) and that reaching the same inert and non-active state of nirvana is the goal for attaining freedom from all suffering.
To give further information in this regard, I will now simply include the second chapter of Beyond Nirvana: The Philosophy of Mayavadism: A Life History, as follows, with my own few comments in brackets:
Shakya Simha Puddha and the Vishnu Avatara Buddha
It may be observed in different places in the Puranas that Mayavadism had been referred to as Buddhism [or “covered Buddhism”. It is this “covered Buddhism” that is described in the Puranas as being the major religion after 10,000 years of Kali-yuga have passed, and when the world will have forgotten all information about the personal form of God.]. It is therefore necessary in this context to briefly discuss Buddhism. Sri Buddha’s philosophy or views is Buddhism. Hence, it is imperative that readers become acquainted with scriptural facts about Lord Buddha, who is declared by scripture to be one of the ten incarnations (avataras) of the Supreme Lord, Sri Vishnu. This is described in Srila Jayadeva Gosvami’s composition “Gita Govinda”:
vedan uddharate jaganti vahate bhugolam udbibhrate
daityam darayate balim chalayate kshatra kshayam kurvate
paulastyam jayate halam kalayate karunyam atanvate
mlecchan murccayate dasaktikrite krishnaya tubhyam namaha
“O Krishna, He who accept ten incarnations! I offer my obeisances unto You for saving the Vedic scriptures as Matsya-incarnation; You help up the universe as Kurma-incarnation, and lifted up the world as Varaha, the Boar incarnation; as Nrishimha You vanquished Hiranyakashipu; as Vamana You deceived Bali Maharaja; as Parashurama You exterminated the corrupt warrior class; as Rama You slew Ravana; as Balarama You took up the plough; as Buddha You bestowed compassion, and as Kalki You kill the Mlecchas.” 1
In his Dasa Avatara Stotram, Srila Jayadeva writes in the ninth verse:
nindasi yajna vidherahaha shrutijatam
sadaya hridaya darshita pashughatam
keshava dhrita bhuddha sharira
jaya jagadisha hare jaya jagadisha hare
“O Lord of the universe, Keshava! You took the form of Lord Buddha Who is full of compassion and stopped the slaughter of animals which is strictly forbidden in the Vedas.”
If this Lord Buddha is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu, then Sri Sankaracharya’s connection to Him requires further elaboration and analysis. It becomes imperative to research this matter if Sankaracharya’s philosophy is referred to as another presentation of Buddhism. Sri Sankaracharya’s assessment of Buddha seems opaque, for he would have us believe that Shakya Simha Buddha [the human] and the Lord Buddha [the avatara] that the Vaishnavas worship, are one and the same personality. However, this is far from the truth. Our revered gurudeva, Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Sarasvati Thakura, revealed that Shakya Simha Buddha was simply a highly intelligent mortal, a vastly learned person who had attained some inner realizations [his enlightement]. So by declaring Shakya Simha to be Lord Buddha or by equating him with Lord Vishnu’s incarnation, Sri Sankaracharya gives sufficient proof of the respect and dedication he quietly nurtured within him for Shakya Simha. The berating and admonishment he directed towards Shakya Simha is indeed only an “eye-wash” intended to hoodwink the public.
One may ask at this point, in which context did Sri Sankaracharya opine Shakya Simha Buddha (also known as Gautama Buddha [the human]) and Avatara Buddha to be the same personality? In response, I kindly request the learned readers to scrutinize Sri Sankaracharya’s commentaries. In his commentary to Brahma Sutra that I referred earlier, the word sugatena refers to Gautama Buddha, the son of Shuddhodana and Mayadevi, and not to the original Vishnu incarnation of Buddha [as the Srimad-Bhagavatam describes as the son of Anjana who appeared in the province of Gaya, or more specifically Bodhgaya]. While discussing Buddha’s philosophy, Sri Sankaracharya mentions his name in his commentary: sarvatha api anadarniya ayam sugata-samayah shreyaskamaih iti abhiprayaha. In this statement sugata again refers to Gautama Buddha, the son of Mayadevi [the person who appeared in the town now known as Lumbini in Nepal]. However, it is true that another name for Vishnu Avatara Buddha is Sugata, and thus Sankaracharya falsely interpolated Shakya Simha Buddha as if he were Vishnu Avatara Buddha. The use of the name Sugata-Buddha for Vishnu Avatara Buddha was already existing in Buddhist scriptures [so combing the two into one was not difficult]. This is substantiated in the book Amarakosha, an extremely ancient treatise written by the famous nihilist and atheist Amara Simha. It is believed that Amara Simha was born approximately 150 years prior to Sankaracharya’s birth. Amara Simha was the son of the brahmana Sabara Svami, who fathered a host of children with different mothers of different castes. The ancient verse about Amara Simha was well known in the learned circles of yore:
brahmanyam abhavad varaha mihiro jyotirvidam agranihi
raja bhartriharish cha vikramanripah kshatratratmajayam abhut
vaishyayam harichandra vaidya tilako jatash cha shankuh kriti
shudrayam amaraha shadeva shabara svami dvija sya atmajaha
“Varaha Mihira, foremost among the greatest astrologers, was born from the womb of a brahmana lady. King Vikrama and King Bhartrihari were born from a kshatriya mother. From a vaishya mother were born Harichandra, a vaidya tilaka – an excellent Ayurveda physician and Shanku; and from a maidservant (shudra) mother was born Amara Simha. These six were fathered by the brahmana Shabara Svami.”
The Amarakosha Speaks of Two Buddhas
Amara Simha was the author of many books on Buddhism. By coincidence all these books came into the possession of Sri Sankaracharya, who subsequently preserved only the Amarakosha and burnt all the others. The following verses about Buddha are found in the Amarakosha:
sarvajnah sugato buddho dharmarajas tathagataha
samanta bhadro bhagavan marajil lokajij jinaha
shadabhijno dashabalo dvayavadi vinayakaha
munindra shrighanah shasta munihi
“All knowing, transcendental Buddha, king of righteousness, He who has come, beneficent, all encompassing Lord, conqueror of the god of love Mara, conqueror of worlds, He who controls his senses, protector of the six enemies, possessor of the ten powers, speaker of monism, foremost leader, lord of the ascetics, embodiment of splendour and teacher of the ascetics.”
The above verse contains eighteen names of Vishnu Avatara Buddha including the name Sugato, and the verse below contains the seven aliases of Shakya Simha Buddha [the human] without any mention of Sugato.
Shakyamunis tu yah sa shakyasimhah sarvarthasiddha shauddhodanish cha
gautamash charkabandhush cha mayadevi sutash cha saha
“Teacher of the Shakyas, lion of the Shakyas, accomplisher of all goals, son of Shuddhodana, of Gautama’s line, friend of the entrapped ones, the son of Mayadevi.”
In these verses, starting with sarvajnah and finishing with munih are eighteen names addressing the original Vishnu incarnation Lord Buddha. The next seven names beginning with Shakya-munistu to Mayadevi-Sutascha refer to Shakya Simha Buddha. The Buddha referred to in the first eighteen names and the Buddha referred to in the later seven names are clearly not the same person. [This clearly indicates that knowledge of the two Buddhas was well known long ago.] In the commentary on Amarakosha by the learned Sri Raghunatha Cakravarti, he also divided the verses into two sections. To the eighteen names of Vishnu Avatara Buddha he writes the words “astadash buddha”, which clearly refers only to the Vishnu avatara. Next, on his commentary for the seven aliases of Shakya Simha he writes: “ete sapta shakya bangshabatirneh buddha muni bishete”, meaning “the next seven names starting from Shakya-munistu are aliases of Buddha-muni [the human] who was born into the Shakya dynasty.”
Thus from the above verses and their commentaries it is indeed transparent that Sugata Buddha [the avatara] and the atheist sage Gautama Buddha are not one and the same person. I take this opportunity to request the learned readers to refer to the Amarakosha published by the respected Mr. H. T. Colebrooke in 1807. 2 On pages 2 & 3 of this book the name ‘Buddha’ has been explained. The ‘Marginal Note’ on page 2 for the first eighteen names, states they are names of Ajina or Buddha and the ‘Marginal Note’ for the later seven states these are aliases of Shakya Simha Buddha. A further footnote is added to clarify the second Buddha, of the latter seven names – Footnote (b) “the founder of the religion named after him.”
Mr. Colebrooke lists in his preface the names of the many commentaries he used as references. Besides Raghunatha Cakravarti’s commentary, he took reference from twenty-five others. It can be said with certainty that the propagator of Bahyatmavada, Jnanatmavada and Sunyamavada, the three pillars of atheism, was Gautama Buddha or Shakya Simha Buddha. There is no evidence whatsoever that Sugata Buddha, Lord Vishnu’s incarnation, was in any way connected with atheism in any form. Shakya Simha or Siddhartha Buddha, received the name Gautama from his spiritual master Gautama Muni, who belonged to the Kapila dynasty. This is confirmed in the ancient Buddhist treatise Sundarananda Charita: “guru gotrad atah kautsaste bhavanti sma gautamah” – meaning “O Kautsa, because his teacher was Gautama, they became known from his family line.”
Other Buddhist Literatures Recording Two Buddhas
Besides the Amarakosha, so highly favored by Sankaracharya, there are other famous Buddhist texts like Prajna-Paramita Sutra, Astasahastrika Prajna-Paramita Sutra, Sata-shastrika Prajna-Paramita Sutra, Lalita Vistara, etc. Proper scrutiny of these texts reveals the existence of three categories of Buddha, namely:
Human Buddhas: like Gautama, who came to be known as Buddha after enlightenment.
Bodhisattva Buddhas: Personalities like Samanta Bhadraka who were born enlightened.
Adi (original) Buddha: the omnipresent Vishnu Avatara incarnation of Lord Buddha.
The Amarakosha states that Lord Buddha, Sri Vishnu’s incarnation, is also known as Samanta Bhadra, whereas Gautama Buddha is a human being. Other than the eighteen names of the Vishnu Avatara Buddha mentioned in Amarakosha, many names of Lord Buddha are recorded in the above mentioned Buddhist texts. In Lalita Vistara, Chapter 21, page 178, it is described how Gautama Buddha meditated on the same spot as the predecessor Buddha:
cha dharanimunde purvabuddhasanasthaha
samartha dhanur grihitva shunya nairatmavanaiha
klesharipum nihatva drishtijalancha bhitva
shiva virajamashoham prapsyate bodhim agryam
“The one seated on the hallowed earth of the previous Buddha’s birthplace is on the path of voidism and renunciation. With his weapon, the powerful bow, he vanquishes the enemies of distress and illusion. Thus with wisdom he will attain the auspicious state of grieflessness and worldly detachment.”
It is transparent from this verse that Gautama Buddha, realizing the spiritual potency of the previous Buddha’s birthplace, chose to perform meditation and austerities in that vicinity, under a pipal tree. The ancient and original name of this place was Kikata, but after Gautama attained enlightenment there, it came to be known as Buddha Gaya (Bodhi Gaya) [now Bodhgaya]. Even to the present day, the rituals of worship to the deity of Buddha at Bodhi Gaya are conducted by a sannyasi (renounced monk) of the Giri order, belonging to the Sri Sankaracharya sect. It is commonly accepted amongst those monks that Buddha-Gaya (Vishnu Avatara Buddha) was a predecessor of Gautama Buddha, who came later to the original Buddha’s birthplace to practice meditation. Shakya Simha Buddha chose this place to attain liberation, knowing it to be saturated with immense spiritual power.
Lankavatara Sutra is a famous and authoritative Buddhist scripture. From the description of the Buddha, which is found in this book, it may be firmly concluded that he is not the more recent Shakya Simha or Gautama Buddha. In the beginning of this book we find Ravana, King of Lanka, praying first to the original Vishnu incarnation Buddha and then to the successive [and in this case the] future Buddha. A part of this prayer is reproduced here:
lankavatara sutram vai purva buddha anuvarnitam
smarami purvakaih buddhair jina-putra puraskritaihi
sutram etan nigadyante bhagavan api bhashatam
bhavishyatyanagate kale buddha buddha-sutas cha ye
“Ravana, the king of Lanka, at first recited in the Totaka metre, then sang the following – ‘I invoke in my memory the aphorisms known as Lankavatara-sutra, compiled and propagated by the previous Buddha (Vishnu’s incarnation). The son of Jina (Lord Buddha) presented this book. Lord Buddha and his sons, who will appear in the future, as well as Bhagavan, the Vishnu incarnation, will continue to instruct all from this book.’”
Anjana’s Son, Named Buddha, is Different from Shuddhodana’s Son
Some people may consider that it is not Sankaracharya but the Vaishnavas who demonstrate a greater degree of respect and sincere reverence towards Buddha, therefore, it is they who should also be known as Buddhists. In this regard my personal view is, according to the Linga Purana, Bhavishya Purana, and the ninth of the ten Vishnu incarnations mentioned in the Varaha Purana, the Buddha described therein is not the same personality as Gautama Buddha, [the person] who was the son of Shuddhodana. Vaishnavas never worship the nihilist and atheist (sunyavada) Buddha or Gautama Buddha, They only worship Lord Vishnu’s ninth incarnation, Lord Buddha, with this prayer from the Srimad-Bhagavatam 10/40/22:
namo buddhaya shuddhaya daitya-danava-mohine
“O Supreme Lord Buddha! I offer my obeisance unto You, Who is faultless and have appeared to delude the demoniac and atheistic class of men.”
Earlier in the Srimad-Bhagavatam 1/3/24, Lord Buddha’s advent is described in the following manner:
tatah kalau sampravritte
“Then in the beginning of Kali-yuga, the Lord will appear as Buddha, son of Anjana, in the province of Gaya, just for the purpose of deluding those who are envious of the faithful theist.”
The Buddha mentioned in this verse is Lord Buddha, son of Anjana; also known by some as Ajina’s son. Sri Sridhara Svami writes in his authoritative commentary to this verse:
buddha avartaramaha tata iti anjanasya sutaha
ajina suta it pathe ajino’ pi sa eva kikateshu madhye gaya-pradeshe
“The words tatah kalau etc., describe Vishnu’s incarnation Buddha as the son of Anjana. Ajina in the word ajina sutaha actually means Anjana. Kikata is the name of the district of Gaya.”
The monists, either by mistake or some other reason, regard Sri Sridhara Svami as belonging to their sect and persuasion. Be as it may, his comments however on this matter can easily be accepted by the Mayavadis as true without hesitation. The following quote is from the Nrisimha Purana 36/29:
kalau prapte yatha buddho bhavannarayana – prabhuh
“In Kali-yuga the Supreme Lord Narayana appears as Buddha.”
A fair estimate of Lord Buddha’s appearance can be made from this verse; that He lived approximately 3500 years ago, or by accurate astronomical and astrological calculation around 4000 years ago. Regarding the astrological facts at the time of His birth, the treatise Nirnaya-sindhu states in the second chapter:
jyaishtha shuka dvitiyayam buddha-janma bhavisyati
“Lord Buddha will appear on the second day of the waxing moon, in the month of Jyaishtha.”
Elsewhere in this book is described the procedure for Lord Buddha’s worship:
pausha shuklasya saptamyam kuryat buddhasya pujaanam
“Lord Buddha is especially worshipped in the seventh day of the waxing moon in the month of Pausha.”
The rituals, prayers and procedures for worship mentioned in these scriptures all clearly indicate that they are meant for Lord Vishnu’s ninth avatara incarnation. Lord Buddha also finds repeated mention in many authentic Vedic scriptures like the Vishnu Purana, Agni Purana, Vayu Purana, and Skanda Purana. The Buddha mentioned in the Devi Bhagavat, a more recent text, and in Shakti Pramoda, refers to Shakya Simha Buddha – not the Vishnu Avatara Buddha.
The truth remains that there are many different demigods and demigoddesses who are worshipped by their respective devotees, in the same way that Shakya Simha Buddha (who was an atheist) is worshipped or glorified by his followers. However, this is all completely separate and unrelated to the path of Sanatana-dharma, which is the eternal religion of man enunciated in the Srimad-Bhagavatam.
According to the German scholar Max Mueller, Shakya Simha Buddha was born in 477 BC in the Lumbini gardens, within the city of Kapilavastu. This ancient and at that time well-populated city in the Terai region of Nepal was well known. Shakya Simha or Gautama Buddha’s father was known as Shuddhodana, while his mother was called Mayadevi, this is all accepted as historical fact. Although Anjana’s son and Shuddhodana’s son both share the name of Buddha, they are nevertheless two different personalities. One of them was born in Kikata – which is now famous as Bodhi-Gaya, while the second Buddha was born in Kapilavastu, Nepal. Thus, the birthplace, parents, and era of Vishnu Avatara Buddha and the birthplace, parents, era, etc., of Gautama Buddha are totally at variance.
We can therefore now observe that the famous personality generally referred to as Buddha is not the Vishnu incarnation, the original Lord Buddha and, hence, Sankaracharya’s views on this are completely unacceptable. It is not uncommon to find disagreements in matters of tradition and history, but in regards to important and significant issues an unbiased and objective discussion is imperative. Attracted by Buddha’s personality and fame, it is one thing to honor and respect him, but being impressed by his philosophy and teachings and reverentially surrendering to him is wholly another matter. Whatever the case may be, I am sure that the respected readers have grasped the crucial point that Buddha is not a single person, but at least two separate identities – Shakya Simha is not the same as Lord Buddha, Vishnu’s ninth incarnation. It is certainly undeniable that there are some similarities between these two Buddhas, yet it is incontestable that they are two different persons [with two different purposes].
1. Mleccha – derived from the Sanskrit root mlech meaning to utter indistinctly (Sanskrit) – a foreigner; non-Aryan; a man of an outcaste race; any non-Sanskrit speaking person who does not conform to the Vedic social and religious customs.
2. This book was published under the auspices of the Asiatic Society and can be referenced at it library. See http://www.indev.nic.in/asiatic/
END OF CHAPTER TWO – BEYOND NIRVANA
Actually, there is much I like about Buddhism. I like its peaceful and gentle ways, the basis of its connection with all of life, but also its principle of detachment and renunciation as a means to enter higher forms of existence. I like some of the forms of meditation that it uses to gain more understanding and control of the mind. I like its mild form of determination to the principles and its goals.
However, from the above descriptions we can understand that the worship of the first Buddha, which at this point in time has practically been forgotten, is a means of definite spiritual progress through nonviolence, compassion for all and renunciation from the world for one’s self-interest. However, these days most of what is known of Buddhism is based on the monistic path as established by Shakya Simha Buddha, the second Buddha who was but a mortal who, with great intellectual ability, propounded a path that promised the end of suffering, and the eventual entrance into what is called nirvana. This goal of entering nirvana actually requires such a discipline that, in this day and age, it is practically impossible to achieve. This would also mean that, no matter how much one progresses along this path, the most one can attain, besides a more peaceful life which may be good enough for some people, are still future rounds of birth in this world. Praying to Shakya Simha or Gautama Buddha, or any of the other forms of which he may be depicted, still cannot offer any Divine assistance, since he is not really Divine. Nor does Buddhism really acknowledge God, either outside us or within. The soul is also not recognized. So, it is perfect for those who wish to follow a path that is basically atheistic in nature.
In this way, it is very similar to the philosophy that was established by Sankaracharya who proposed, through his own imaginative interpretation of some basic Sanskrit verses, that the Absolute Truth was impotent, inert, and without any characteristics. Like the Buddhist sunya or void, nirvana, or Great White Light, Sankaracharya also propounded a monistic Brahman that is the eternal and timeless void, nondual, an impersonal oneness, and great white light, the Brahman effulgence. You could say that it is merely an adaptation of the core concepts of Buddhism but with a Vedic slant. As Shakya Simha Buddha tried to nullify the sufferings of the world through voidism, Sankaracharya tried to do the same thing with his conception of impersonal Brahman. Sankaracharya says that Brahman is all that is eternal, while Shakya Simha proposed that the void is all that remains.
Students of Sankaracharya will accept him as a scholar of Vedanta and a great theist and will follow what appears to be his apparently theistic teachings, but in this way they actually become atheists by giving up the concept of God and any chance of establishing a relationship with the Supreme Being.
Sri Krishna-Dvaipayana Vyasadeva, who compiled the major Vedic texts, has declared in his writings in the Puranas that the monistic, impersonal Mayavada philosophy is false and non-Vedic. The same would apply to what we presently know as Buddhism. You can find this in the Padma Purana 25/7:
mayavadam asacchastram pracchannam bauddham uchyate
“The theory of Mayavadism is a concocted scripture and is known as a disguised Buddhism.”
Therefore, if we accept the traditional and major Vedic view, as found in all Vedic samhitas and original texts, it ultimately leads to the premise that God is personal, with personality and characteristics, active and eternal, though beyond our mental ability to comprehend, but with whom everyone has a relationship that only needs to be reawakened. The real Vedic tradition points to the ways in which we can grow beyond our limitations and realize by direct perception our natural spiritual identity and reawaken our eternal loving relationship with the Supreme Spirit. This is the direction and ultimate goal of all truly Vedic processes of spiritual development.
[This article is from http://www.stephen-knapp.com]
8 de março de 2013 às 6:15 PM
Eu diria que o Sr. Buddha pregou uma Doutrina Teísta disfarçada de Ateísta. No Budismo, existe o conceito de “Ser Supremo” muito embora não seja utilizada a palavra “Deus” para se referir a esse “Ser Supremo”. No lugar da palavra “Deus”, os Budistas utilizam o termo “Buda Primordial” ou “Buda Supremo” para se referir ao “Ser Supremo”. Na minha visão, isto que os Budistas chamam de “Buda Primordial” ou “Buda Supremo” é o que os Vaishnavas chamam de Vishnu. Esta equivalência torna-se ainda mais evidente se analisarmos o nome do “Buda Primordial” no Budismo Tibetano que é “Vairochana”, cuja tradução é “Radiante como o Sol”. Se analisarmos o fato de que tanto o “Buda Primordial” quanto o “Vishnu” são divindades solares, torna-se aceitável a ideia de que o “Buda Primordial” e o “Vishnu” são a mesma pessoa (se é que posso usar esta palavra! rs rs rs…) e que o homem Sidharta Gautama é de fato um Avatar de Vishnu. Na minha visão, a Tradição Védica e o Budismo estão mais entrelaçados do que se pode imaginar…
9 de setembro de 2013 às 6:14 PM
deva-dviṣāṁ nigama-vartmani niṣṭhitānāṁ
pūrbhir mayena vihitābhir adṛśya-tūrbhiḥ
lokān ghnatāṁ mati-vimoham atipralobhaṁ
veṣaṁ vidhāya bahu bhāṣyata aupadharmyam
Word for word:
deva-dviṣām — of those who were envious of the devotees of the Lord; nigama — the Vedas; vartmani — on the path of; niṣṭhitānām — of the well situated; pūrbhiḥ — by rockets; mayena — made by the great scientist Maya; vihitābhiḥ — made by; adṛśya-tūrbhiḥ — unseen in the sky; lokān — the different planets; ghnatām — of the killers; mati-vimoham — bewilderment of the mind; atipralobham — very attractive; veṣam — dress; vidhāya — having done so; bahu bhāṣyate — will talk very much; aupadharmyam — subreligious principles.
When the atheists, after being well versed in the Vedic scientific knowledge, annihilate inhabitants of different planets, flying unseen in the sky on well-built rockets prepared by the great scientist Maya, the Lord will bewilder their minds by dressing Himself attractively as Buddha and will preach on subreligious principles.
This incarnation of Lord Buddha is not the same Buddha incarnation we have in the present history of mankind. According to Śrīla Jīva Gosvāmī, the Buddha incarnation mentioned in this verse appeared in a different Kali age. In the duration of life of one Manu there are more than seventy-two Kali-yugas, and in one of them the particular type of Buddha mentioned here would appear. Lord Buddha incarnates at a time when the people are most materialistic and preaches commonsense religious principles. Such ahiṁsā is not a religious principle itself, but it is an important quality for persons who are actually religious. It is a commonsense religion because one is advised to do no harm to any other animal or living being because such harmful actions are equally harmful to he who does the harm. But before learning these principles of nonviolence one has to learn two other principles, namely to be humble and to be prideless. Unless one is humble and prideless, one cannot be harmless and nonviolent. And after being nonviolent one has to learn tolerance and simplicity of living. One must offer respects to the great religious preachers and spiritual leaders and also train the senses for controlled action, learning to be unattached to family and home, and enacting devotional service to the Lord, etc. At the ultimate stage one has to accept the Lord and become His devotee; otherwise there is no religion. In religious principles there must be God in the center; otherwise simple moral instructions are merely subreligious principles, generally known as upadharma, or nearness to religious principles.
20 de setembro de 2014 às 3:33 AM
E interessante notar dois pontos em particular: 1º) para os budistas a alma só existe enquanto princípio vital do corpo físico, e segundo eles, uma vez que a pessoa morra a alma deixa de existir e se dilui na substância universal. Em contraposição em um dos versos mais conhecidos Sri Krishna fala no Gita que a Alma é eterna e imutável, que não pode ser destruída. É fácil de compreendermos que como Krishna está acima de qualquer moralidade, acima de qualquer religião, poderia muito bem empregar esta artemanha para eludir os ateístas que obviamente não acreditavam na presença da alma. 2º) como meta a ser alcançada a liberação budista diz respeito a fusão da mente individual na mente universal. Mais uma técnica desta estratégia foi culminante que transformou pessoa ateístas em religiosas. Se pararmos por um instante para pensar isto é fantástico: pegar pessoas ateus (que não acreditam em Deus e nem na Alma) e coloca-las para meditar dizendo que a alma só existe como princípio vital, e que a libertação é a fusão da mente na mente universal. Como geralmente todo ateísta é uma pessoa de nível mental, certamente eles gostaram desse ideia de mente universal e não existência da alma. Outro ponto questionável é a questão de Céu. Mesmo que alguns comparem o Adi Budha com Vishnu, ou Maha Vishnu, ainda assim, está muito longe da Pessoa Divina, Bhagavan, da qual origina-se todas as criações. Não se encontra na literatura budista algo compatível com a ideia de serviço devocional amoroso ao Senhor, ou com a ideia de servos eternos. Não se encontra no budismo a ideia de que haja um local, uma esfera, em que possamos manter nossa individualidade e nos relacionarmos de forma eterna com a Pessoa de Deus. Pelo contrário, a literatura budista contempla a liberação pela imersão no vazio iluminador. Estranho notar que em toda criação do Senhor Krishna não haja um espaço sequer em que não seja preenchido por Sua energia onipenetrante. Os mundos espirituais são preenchidos por Sua Luz. E os universos materiais são repletos de criações. A luz enquanto substância fotolítica não pode ser de forma alguma vazia, ou oca. Concluímos que existem muitos conceitos errados na religião budista, conceitos estes que foram necessários para transformar um povo ateu em niilistas impersonalistas, avançar nesse sentido, pois obviamente, não se poderia dar um passo tão longo transformando-os imediatamente em personalistas teístas. Foi um passo gradual, como Maharaj explicou.
17 de dezembro de 2014 às 8:33 PM
Caro Bhakta Ubirajara,
Seus conceitos sobre o Budismo estão todos errados. Não sei de onde você tirou essas ideias. Aliás, tenho notado que de forma geral os devotos quando falam sobre o Budismo, cometem muitos erros por desconhecer os pontos principais do Budismo, lembrando que o Budismo tem um corpo enorme de conhecimento,e mesmo um assunto como Karma,por exemplo, tem diferentes níveis de ensinamento. Como o Budismo é muito vasto e requer bastante leitura e estudo, então é fácil pegar algum conceito bem simplista e dizer que isso é o ensinamento budista. Quero em breve, assim que tiver tempo, responder os seus conceitos acima, mostrando como estão totalmente errados, com base nos sutras budistas. Mesmo no Caitanya Caritamrta, Bhaktivinoda Thakura lista alguns principios budistas que na verdade não representam o entendimento budista em si. Ele deve ter retirado de algum livro sobre Budismo, mas que não representa o ensinamento do Budha Shakyamuni, o qual não tem nada a ver com esse Buda Avatar do Bhagavatam.
15 de março de 2015 às 10:21 PM