Fall 2020 not offered
This course serves as an introduction to major themes of Buddhist thought and practice within the cultural and historical framework of Tibet and the wider Himalayan world. In doing so, it examines various approaches to the study of religion and questions traditional definitions of categories such as "religion" and "Buddhism" themselves. Beginning with a close study of Patrul Rinpoche's classic 19th-century guide to Tibetan Buddhism, the early part of the course focuses on the doctrinal foundations of the tradition. This is followed by a historical and more critical examination of Tibetan religious history, proceeding from Buddhism's Indian antecedents and its initial arrival in Tibet during the seventh century through the present day. The course will explore a wide range of Tibetan religious cultures and practices including Buddhist ethics, systems of monastic and ascetic life, ritual activities, sacred geography and pilgrimage, lay religion, as well as the status of Tibetan Buddhism under Chinese occupation and in the West. The majority of readings will consist of primary texts in translation, and will concentrate on Tibet's rich narrative literary tradition. These will be supplemented by secondary literature on the study of religion and Tibetan Buddhism.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Lecture / Discussion||Grading Mode: Graded|
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (CEAS-MN)(CEAS)(CEAS-Phil/Reli)(RELI-MN)(RELI)(SAST-MN)(SISP-Reli Conc)
Patrul Rinpoche, THE WORDS OF MY PERFECT TEACHER (Shambhala 2010)
Tsangnyon Heruka/Andrew Quintman, trans., THE LIFE MILAREPA (Penguin Classics 2010)
Dalai Lama (Tenzin Gyatso), FREEDOM IN EXILE: THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF THE DALAI LAMA (HarperPerennial 2008)
John Powers, INTRODUCTION TO TIBETAN BUDDHISM (Snow Lion 2007)
Sam van Schaik, TIBET: A HISTORY (Yale UP, 6/28/11)
|Examinations and Assignments: |
4 short papers (2-3 pp.); 1 final paper (10-12 pp.)
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
This course fulfills the "Historical Traditions" requirement for the Religion Department major.
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