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Thread: It is wrong to classify Buddhism as South or East Asian171 days old

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    Molecular Biologist An Shigao's Avatar
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    Default It is wrong to classify Buddhism as South or East Asian

    While it is true that Buddhism had its longest history in East and South Asia, it is wrong to treat it as exclusive to those regions. In fact, Mahayana Buddhism largely developed in parts of Eastern Iran like Gandhara, Bactria, and Sogdia where texts like Avatamsaka Sutra and more were written. Gandhara was a melting pot of Greek, Persian, Hellenic, and Indian influences for much of history. The Buddhist statues the Taliban blew up were in fact from Greco-Buddhist era. Moreover, Bodhidharma in all likelihood came from these regions. Greeks, Persians, and Indians all had a role in developing and transmitting Mahayana Buddhism, which became big in East Asian countries.

    Parthians and Sogdians have a history of transmitting sutras and more to China. My username is, after all, based on a Parthian Buddhist missionary to China.

    Buddhism is a universalist religion that cannot be reduced to any single nationality or culture. In fact, we call it the "Dharma". The three jewels of Mahayana tradition are Dharma, Sangha, and the Buddha.

    I follow Mahayana Buddhism because I genuinely believe it is true, but I wanted to make it clear that it is not an ethnic religion. Everyone is welcomed into the path of the Dharma if they have a sincere willingness.
    Last edited by An Shigao; 2019-04-04 at 20:49.

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