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The Golden Age of Indian Buddhist Philosophy$
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Jan Westerhoff

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198732662

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198732662.001.0001

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Abhidharma

Abhidharma

Chapter:
(p.35) 1 Abhidharma
Source:
The Golden Age of Indian Buddhist Philosophy
Author(s):

Jan Westerhoff

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198732662.003.0002

The chapter begins by introducing the origin of the Abhidharma and the structure of Abhidharma texts, focusing on the role of matrices, texts in question-and answer-format and the status of the omniscience of the Buddha in the development of the Abhidharma. It examines the question of the authenticity of the Abhidharma texts, followed by a discussion of five major Abhidharma schools: Mahāsaṃghika and the Sthaviranikāya schools, Theravāda, Pudgalavāda, Sarvāstivāda, and Sautrāntika. The section on Mahāsaṃghika contains discussion of its anticipation of Mahāyāna themes, the Theravāda section examines a key Abhidharma text, the Kathāvatthu, the Pudgalavāda discussion focuses on its conception of a person (pudgala) as distinct from a self, while Sarvāstivāda and Sautrāntika concentrate on the specific theories of time that differentiate these two schools.

Keywords:   Abhidharma, matrices, question-and-answer format, omniscience of the Buddha, Mahāsaṃghika, Sthaviranikāya, Theravāda, Pudgalavāda, Sarvāstivāda, Sautrāntika

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