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Ritual and Presentation in Early Buddhist Religious Architecture

Ritual and Presentation in Early Buddhist Religious Architecture The physical organization and layout of Buddhist reliquary mounds, stupas, provides a window into the forms of ritual practiced by Buddhists in the first few centuries B.C. through the end of the second century A.D. Specifically, the manner in which stupas were architecturally presented informs upon the differences in ritual presentation by the clergy and the laity. Attempts by the Buddhist clergy to direct worship and establish a privileged position in regard to the Buddha were resisted by the laity; in contrast, the laity attempted to preserve the egalitarian aspects of Buddhism. Traces of the laity's resistance can be identified in the architectural layouts of ritual spaces of the early Buddhists. The organization of ritual within stupa complexes also illustrates the methods used by early Buddhists to foster group cohesion within a highly individualistic religious tradition. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Asian Perspectives University of Hawai'I Press

Ritual and Presentation in Early Buddhist Religious Architecture

Asian Perspectives , Volume 42 (1) – May 20, 2003

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Publisher
University of Hawai'I Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2003 University of Hawai'i Press.
ISSN
1535-8283
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The physical organization and layout of Buddhist reliquary mounds, stupas, provides a window into the forms of ritual practiced by Buddhists in the first few centuries B.C. through the end of the second century A.D. Specifically, the manner in which stupas were architecturally presented informs upon the differences in ritual presentation by the clergy and the laity. Attempts by the Buddhist clergy to direct worship and establish a privileged position in regard to the Buddha were resisted by the laity; in contrast, the laity attempted to preserve the egalitarian aspects of Buddhism. Traces of the laity's resistance can be identified in the architectural layouts of ritual spaces of the early Buddhists. The organization of ritual within stupa complexes also illustrates the methods used by early Buddhists to foster group cohesion within a highly individualistic religious tradition.

Journal

Asian PerspectivesUniversity of Hawai'I Press

Published: May 20, 2003

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