Buddhism and Islam on the Silk Road by Johan Elverskog

By Johan Elverskog

In the modern global the assembly of Buddhism and Islam is as a rule imagined as considered one of violent disagreement. certainly, the Taliban's destruction of the Bamiyan Buddhas in 2001 appeared not just to reenact the notorious Muslim destruction of Nalanda monastery within the 13th century but additionally to reaffirm the stereotypes of Buddhism as a calm, rational philosophy and Islam as an inherently violent and irrational faith. but when Buddhist-Muslim historical past was once easily repeated situations of Muslim militants attacking representations of the Buddha, how had the Bamiyan Buddha statues survived 13 hundred years of Muslim rule?

Buddhism and Islam at the Silk Road demonstrates that the historical past of Buddhist-Muslim interplay is far richer and extra complicated than many imagine. This groundbreaking publication covers internal Asia from the 8th century during the Mongol empire and to the top of the Qing dynasty within the overdue 19th century. by means of exploring the conferences among Buddhists and Muslims alongside the Silk street from Iran to China over greater than a millennium, Johan Elverskog unearths that this lengthy come upon was once really one among profound cross-cultural alternate during which spiritual traditions weren't in simple terms enriched yet remodeled in lots of ways.

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For only when no karma is produced will no future being be reborn, and only then will there be no suffering in the world. This is the standard Nikaya interpretation that the Mahayana chal­ lenged with the new theory of emptiness, though it did not challenge the fundamental Buddhist claim of human misperception. In both the Nikaya and the Mahayana traditions the central problem is the same: people desire things and thereby act in the world and thus produce karma. But the idea of emptiness could also be taken in numerous directions, and in the larger Hindu context of Gupta India it is perhaps not surprising that it went toward a monist conceptualization.

Contact 39 term for an administrative unit or county in ancient India and has continued to bear that meaning since at least the sixth century c . e . in the expression “ Nepâla-Mandala” for the Kathmandu Valley and its surrounding territory. The concept of the king as cakravartin— as both he who turns (vartayati) the wheel (cakra) of his kingdom or empire from its cen­ ter and he whose chariot wheel has rolled its perimeter without obstruction— is one that goes back to the late Vedic period. Central to this construction of kingship is the notion that the king, standing at the center of his kingdom (from which he also rules over the periphery), mirrors the godhead at the center of its realm, its divine or celestial kingdom.

142 Or was it simply the difficulties in finding a suitable husband for his daughter? Or did Islam simply make more sense than the Dharma? 143 By putting these questions in terms of an individual one can readily see how difficult such questions are on a personal level; how much more so on an abstract, historical, and civilizational level? Of course, it is on that macro level that historians and scholars of religion often try to provide answers and thereby paint a convincing portrait of what “actually happened” through a logical chain of cause and effect.

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